I'm one of those readers who finds it easy to get into a rut, reading the same genre or author over and over. One of the authors I have read to death in the past is John Grisham, but lately I haven't read a lot of legal thrillers. Having had a long break I was instantly interested when I saw this book. The author's bona fides for the genre are enhanced by his years of experience as a prosecutor, defence attorney and latterly as a judge.
Small town Alabama boy Jay Davis is a rookie lawyer who has returned to practice law in his quiet home town, rather than being lured away by bright lights and large paychecks. His introduction to legal practice seems relatively pedestrian until he is handed a high profile role in a high profile case. When two year old Faith disappears while her mother is working the little girl's new step-father becomes the prime suspect. The evidence begins to mount and with the public outraged it seems inevitable that he will be sentenced to death. Jay struggles with conflicting emotions, but is determined to uncover the truth.
I really liked this book. It is a pacey crime story with a charming main character and lots of Southern feel. Jay is close to his parents and fond of the place he grew up in. He's looking for love but serious about his career. He's almost too good to be true. I found myself feeling so sad for Faith's distraught mother April, and could well picture her grieving family. While the subject matter is gritty there was little in the way of graphic detail which was no bad thing. It wasn't a complicated read, for example the evidence didn't require long scientific explanations, but I didn't see the twist in the tail coming, which is always good. I sped through the book and was looking forward to seeing how the case would end.
Since I read this book the author has re-edited it, so while I would normally talk a bit about typos and formatting I think it's only fair here to say there were no big issues and that if refined further it should be a very polished product.
Format: Kindle, review copy
My Rating: 4*