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A Plague of Secrets

(Dismas Hardy #13)

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4.13  ·  Rating details ·  5,203 ratings  ·  277 reviews
In a multiple murder case plagued by lies and deception, there is one terrible secret that defense attorney Dismas Hardy is duty-bound to protect. Even if the price is his client's life.



When Dylan Vogler, the charming manager of the popular Bay Beans West coffee shop in San Francisco's Haight-Ashbury district, is gunned down near the store, inspectors are shocked to discov
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Audio CD, Abridged, 0 pages
Published November 30th 2009 by Brilliance Audio (first published June 30th 2009)
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Benjamin Weitz Yes, it can be read as stand alone. However, the author develops his main characters and enhances them book after book. I started at Dismas Hardy book…moreYes, it can be read as stand alone. However, the author develops his main characters and enhances them book after book. I started at Dismas Hardy book one "Dead Irish" and just finished book 12 "A Plague of Secrets".
If you wish to do the same thing, download and print "Publication Order of Dismas Hardy Books"(less)
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Lewis Weinstein
John Lescroart writes some of the best courtroom novels out there, and this is one of them. However, this novel also deals with a serious problem in the American justice system, and I expect Mr. Lescroart feels very strongly about it, as do I.

In "A Plague of Secrets," prosecutors and police, in their zeal for a conviction in a high profile case, violate their obligation to seek justice by ignoring evidence, or the lack of it, as they proceed against their target defendant. Combine that with a j
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Johnny
Jan 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
I’m not a criminal attorney, so this may not be right. What are the three essentials for a murder case? Are they motive, means, and opportunity? Theoretically, one doesn’t even need definitive physical evidence to point to a defendant’s guilt provided these three factors are demonstrated convincingly enough. In A Plague of Secrets, my latest foray into the San Francisco world of erstwhile cop and assistant D.A. turned defense attorney Dismas Hardy and erstwhile social worker turned private inves ...more
James Thane
A Plague of Secrets reunites John Lescroart's main series characters, Dismas Hardy, Abe Glitsky and Wyatt Hunt, along with the cast of minor characters that populates this very engaging series. The book opens with a personal tragedy that afflicts Glitsky, Hardy's best friend and the head of the San Francisco Homicide unit. Not surprisingly, the tragedy will distract Glitsky's attention from his duties in the department, and it probably goes without saying that this will not be a good thing.

Immed
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Terri
Aug 16, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mysteries
The Manager of a popular coffee house is murdered and a backpack of weed beside his body. The suspect - the store's owner and a college friend of the victim. So as the police pursue her, she hires Dismas Hardy to defend her. Major political forces get involved and special Grand Jury is called, and then another man is murdered, and she is charged with that too.

Very entertaining trial procedure and strong interesting characters.

The mystery well crafted, though the real killer is a surprise twist I
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Marty Fried
Sep 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another interesting story with a good mix of humor and outrage. Maybe it could use more T-shirts, but it had a few good ones. OK, lest you think I'm crazy, I'm talking about his partner who likes to wear humorous T-shirts a lot, seemingly only once for each one. For example, there was one good one in this book that said "Haikus can be easy./But sometimes they don’t make sense./Refrigerator."

This book was similar to many other ones in that an innocent person becomes entangled with the police and
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Cora
Jul 07, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Being a huge fan, and having read most of his earlier books, I found this book which is four-hundred-thirteen pages long, at times to be moving at an excruciatingly slow pace that I actually thought about putting it down. There is more action in the last thirty pages than in the entire three-hundred-eighty-three previous pages put together. There are a number of mini-plots that are set up... but never culminated. This is not one of Lescroart's best works. "A Plague of Secrets" lacks the freshnes ...more
Kathryn
May 15, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What a wild and twisted tale but ultimately satisfying as are all the books in the Dismas Hardy series.
David
Aug 09, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: completed
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Caitlin
Oct 17, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2009
In the world of legal thrillers John Grisham usually gets all the hype, but John Lescroart and Robert Tannenbaum are much better writers. A Plague of Secrets is Lescroart's twentieth book in his Dismas Hardy series; that's pretty impressive.

I like this series, set in San Francisco, partly because it's set in San Francisco, but also because the recurring characters & their lives are interesting. After twenty books in the series, I really care about these people, they feel fleshed out and real to
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Linda
Jul 21, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery-thriller
Lescroat's latest book is a full of action and suspense. Being from California, I love reading the mysteries that take place in places that I am familiar with, and San Francisco is one of those places. This book contains mystery, suspense and good characterization, though not as deep as many of his novels. San Francisco is a great place for this adventure, especially as Lescroat weaves in the local color with different food offerings, the scenery and with hilly and curved streets, bayside scenes ...more
Steve
Feb 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great as always. I haven't read a Dismas Hardy book in a while and I need to catch up. I love any series...it's like catching up with old friends. I think for courtroom drama John Lescroart is the tops. I like that the character seem like regular humans instead of being unbelievable characters. In this book a dark history of a prominent family threatens to come to light, but like all of us, no one is tougher on us...than us. Great story!
Bryce
Apr 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kent
Aug 26, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, 2019, mystery
Entertaining. I appreciated the relative restraint of this legal thriller.
Val
May 24, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime, 2018, series
This one grabbed me from the very beginning and didn't let go until the end! For me, the strongest parts of these novels can be found in the courtroom trials. Dismas is a genius at turning things around when there appears to be zero hope! There was a lot covered in this book: Police moving too quickly when there was no evidence, and then refusing to accept said lack of evidence, blackmail, murder, as well as the legalization of marijuana issue. Great book!
Ed
Jul 17, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Legal thriller fans.
It's good having Dismas Hardy back. He gets better with age. It also feels good to read a story that harks back to San Francisco in the 60s and 70s, years I remember with great affection as chaotic as they were.

The story begins at Bay Beans West, a coffee shop in the center of the Haight-Ashbury district, the epicenter of the now vanished hippie culture. It's very popular and its manager, Dylan Vogler, can take credit for a lot of its success. Problem is, he's found shot to death behind the sho
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Mary
Nov 24, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio
This is a Dismas Hardy legal thriller with blackmail, political intrigue, and multiple murder.

The first victim is Dylan Vogler, a charming ex-convict who manages the Bay Beans West coffee shop in San Francisco's Haight-Ashbury district. When his body is found, inspectors discover that his knapsack is filled with high-grade marijuana. It soon becomes clear that San Francisco's A-list flocked to Bay Beans West not only for their caffeine fix.

But how much did Maya Townshend-the socialite niece of t
...more
Chris
Aug 26, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a Dismas Hardy legal thriller with blackmail, political intrigue, and multiple murder.

The first victim is Dylan Vogler, a charming ex-convict who manages the Bay Beans West coffee shop in San Francisco's Haight-Ashbury district. When his body is found, inspectors discover that his knapsack is filled with high-grade marijuana. It soon becomes clear that San Francisco's A-list flocked to Bay Beans West not only for their caffeine fix.

But how much did Maya Townshend-the socialite niece of t
...more
Min
Jan 28, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loved this book! Of course, I always love Lescroart's work (especially the Dismas Hardy series), but this book was better than usual. From the jacket copy, I wasn't sure I would like it, but it got off the ground quickly and it kept me reading nearly straight through.

The manager of a successful Bay Area coffee shop is murdered, and it's soon discovered that he was using the coffee shop to sell marijuana to numerous customers. One thing leads to another and soon enough, the owner of the shop is H
...more
Cheryl
Apr 09, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own-on-kindle
OK, so I'm jumping into the author without having read his prior 19 books which could be part of the problem. I had some issues trying to follow the characters (wait...who's wife is she?) and since I was reading it on my kindle, didn't have the patience to backtrack and figure it out. I remember thinking at one point that I should map everyone out with their relationships and jobs, but decided that this was more effort than I wanted to exert for a mystery/thriller novel. Historical fiction, mayb ...more
Ellen
Jun 22, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A Plague of Secrets by John Lescroart.

Maya Townsend is a wealthy (very wealthy) owner of a coffee shop.

Why she needs to be an owner of the Bay Beans coffee Shop did not become apparent.

Maya becomes Hardy's client after a murder takes place close to the store. It does becomes apparent that Maya tells half truths to any of Hardy's questions, if that.
Then another murder occurs and this victim is also an acquaintance of Maya's. Does Maya have something going on that she's been hiding? Is the Bay Bea
...more
Linda
Oct 23, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The manager of a popular San Francisco coffee shop is found dead in the back alley. It soon becomes apparent that he was selling more than lattes. One of the suspects is the shop owner, Maya Townshend, who is running a sort of hobby business. When another of her former acquaintances is murdered, she's indicted.

Dismas Hardy agrees to defend Maya, whether she committed these crimes or not, and he has to admit that she seems to be guilty. Her maddening refusal to discuss her relationship to the tw
...more
Eric Wright
Oct 10, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, own
Lescroart tells a convoluted tale full of lies, deception and secrets going back decades. Maya Townshend, owner of a popular coffee shop in san Francisco's Haight-Ashbury district is charged with the murder of her manager who is found with his knapsack full of high grade marijuana.

Maya and her husband enlist lawyer Dismas Hardy to defend her before a judge with a axe to grind about Hardy. Throughout the book, Hardy's investigative team uncovers secret after secret. The end reveals one final, and
...more
Chuck
Jul 30, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have sworn off legal thrillers for awhile but I was forced into the emergency book stash and came up with this one. I learned that this is one of a series but it stands alone very nicely. It features Dismas Hardy, a criminal defense attorney, who takes on as a client a woman who owns a trendy coffee shop. She is accused of a double murder one victim of whom is the manager of her coffee shop. I suggest that you just read and enjoy the ride because any attempt to figure it out on your own will s ...more
Joe
Nov 02, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller
and yet again...realize I am starting this character at his 13th outing! None the less....I loved meeting these characters...Dismas Hardy and Abe Glitsky as they challenge Mr John Grisham in the courtroom. Great legal thriller. Very complicated plot, in a good way. Definitely kept me on my toes, following the plot right up until the end.
Hal
Mar 15, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
"A Plague of Secrets" is the 13th novel in Lescroart's series about defense attorney Dismas Hardy. Lescroat excels at using dialog to move the story along and to flesh out the relationships between his characters.

As a fan of serial novels, I particularly like how the key characters here grow and evolve over time. They are not stick figures; they come across as real people with real problems. If you are new to this series, I definitely recommend trying to read the books in order. Each novel is se
...more
Cindi Sempert
May 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I picked this mystery out of the small library at my dad's apartment in Maui. I had never heard of the aythor but I really enjoyed the fast read with numerous twists and turns in the mystery. I was quickly drawn into the story of a coffee shop owner who is presumably falsely accused of the murder of the manager of her coofdee shop. Dismas Hardy is hired to defend her (this is book #13 in a series about Dismas Hardy). I did think the relationship between Maya and her husband Joel was a little unr ...more
Mary
Oct 24, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dismas gets a call from his friend and the city Supervisor to meet him for lunch, where he asks him to be the lawyer for his sister, who has been visited by the Police after an employee of hers was killed in an alley behind her shop. He asks if she was a suspect? No, his friend says, but I think she needs a lawyer present when talking to the Police, Hardy agrees whole heartedly, and says have her call and make an appointment at his office. When He gets back from lunch, his secretary is upset and ...more
Linda Munro
Feb 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
From blackmail to murder and a little political intrigue; this Dismas Hardy thriller truly stands out!
Victim #1: Dylan Vogler, ex-com and present manager of Bay Beans West (BBW) found dead in an alley behind BBW with a full backpack of marijuana.
Victim #2: Levon Preshlee, found dead, hit bu blnt object in his apartment; no forensic evidence located.
As the bodies pile up, attention becomes focused on Maya Townshend, local socialite, neice of the Mayor and absentee owner of BBW. Maya has also harb
...more
Barbara
Sep 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great series. Sometimes the cases are not so riveting, and sometimes there is too much backstory, but when put all together, I guess it's needed.

In this installment, Lescroart is at his best. Really good case, lots of twists, just enough backstory about the family to keep that moving forward, and surprise at the end. I mean, at the end- like 10 pages from the end.

You will not be disappointed.
Jim
Jun 27, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018
Dismas Hardy, Abe Glitsky and gang all return for the thirteenth tale in author John Lescroart's, "A Plague Of Secrets. For the first 400 pages I thought was a pretty good read. However the ending was a stinker. I do really enjoy the exploits of Hardy and all his cohorts. With some colorful and unique characters Lescroart's plots are a wonderful way to get lost for a couple of hours a day. Three stars out of a possible five stars for this tale. Check it out.
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962 followers
John Lescroart (born January 14, 1948) is an American author best known for two series of legal and crime thriller novels featuring the characters Dismas Hardy and Abe Glitsky.

Lescroart was born in Houston, Texas, and graduated from Junípero Serra High School, San Mateo, California (Class of 1966). He then went on to earn a B.A. in English with Honors at UC Berkeley in 1970. In addition to his nov
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Other books in the series

Dismas Hardy (1 - 10 of 18 books)
  • Dead Irish (Dismas Hardy, #1)
  • The Vig (Dismas Hardy, #2)
  • Hard Evidence (Dismas Hardy, #3)
  • The 13th Juror (Dismas Hardy, #4)
  • The Mercy Rule (Dismas Hardy, #5)
  • Nothing but the Truth (Dismas Hardy, #6)
  • The Hearing (Dismas Hardy #7)
  • The Oath (Dismas Hardy, #8)
  • The First Law (Dismas Hardy #9)
  • The Second Chair (Dismas Hardy #10)

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