I’d like to think this book got me out of jury duty.

Having been called down to the Richard J. Daley Center for standby duty on an April Monday morn, and completely bumfuzzled at the lack of WiFi available (Really!), I reached into my purse and pulled out my latest read. I hadn’t planned it this way, but can you think of a better possible place to read a Scott Turow book than a jurors’ assembly room?

I snuggled down into my seat, held the book up high and didn’t go to bed that night until I finished it. Legal thriller, indeed.

If you read Turow’s classic, “Presumed Innocent,” or even caught the Harrison Ford flick, then you’ll have the background helpful (but not necessary) to enjoy his latest. The opening pages find Rusty Sabich’s wife, Barbara, dead. Rusty, now chief judge on the appeals court, sits with her body for almost a full day before calling anyone. Tommy Molto, Rusty’s nemesis, now may have that chance at redemption—if he and his staff can prove Rusty really is one bad dude.

There are plenty of familiar characters —Sabich, Molto, Sandy Stern and Sabich’s son Nat figure prominently. This being 20-some years later, Nat is now a grown man and, well, definitely has inherited specific parts of his parents’ personalities. And Rusty clearly didn’t learn his lesson the first time around.

Turow paints his picture with the same deftness of his previous tomes, and readers are easily engaged in the story. Chapters jump between perspectives—those of Rusty, Nat, and Anna, Rusty’s legal assistant (you know what that means!) and Nat’s … you’ll have to read to find out. It’s never boring, and even though it does jump back and forth in time a bit, never confusing.

Whether you root for Rusty or not, you’ll want to find out just who killed Barbara, and chances are you’ll make more than one educated guess before you get to the last page. This will make a terrific beach read this summer.

Or, it could get you out of jury duty.

Scott Turow

One thought

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