Friday, September 27, 2013

Sleight of Hand - Philip Margolin

We have here Charles Benedict, a successful criminal defense lawyer, who was also an amateur magician. He could make an evidence disappeared in a court room, during a trial. Benedict murdered Carrie Blair - a prosecutor, framed her husband for the murder, and became his lawyer. No matter how innocent Mr Blair was, if the real culprit was his lawyer, the police would never find the truth and Blair would end in jail.

As the heroine, we have Dana Culter, a private investigation, a character had been used in Philip Margolin's books a couple of times. Dana would cross paths with the Blair case and helped the poor husband.

Among what I had read lately, this book came out as something smart. I didn't know how Dana would win against the clever Benedict, but she did. This book reminded me how I used to love reading Philip Margolin books.

The 9th Girl - Tami Hoag

The advertisement said: "“Kovac had seen more dead bodies than he could count: men, women, children; victims of shootings, stabbings, strangulations, beatings; fresh corpses and bodies that had been left for days in the trunks of cars in the dead of summer. But he had never seen anything quite like this. . . .”
Well, it sounded promising. I had read murder stories that made me sick and from the advertisement, I imagined some kind of cruelty beyond imagination. It turned out not so new or so scary, but this book was still a good read.

Police detective Sam Kovac and his partner Liska were in the middle of a serial killer investigation. The new victim, which the press called as the 9th or the zombie, fell down from a car's trunk during a road accident. As the investigation went, the 9th victim was identified as a friend of Liska's son. Perhaps half of the book was about how hard raising teenagers. I think in the end this book was as good as Prior Bad Acts and I finished this in 2 days, which was very fast.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Prior Bad Acts - Tami Hoag

After 'Ashes to Ashes', the next book I read was 'Dust to Dust', which I thought was quite boring. It was about a group in the police department which hated gay men.

The next in the series was 'Prior Bad Acts' which I finished last night. Now, this one was something I'd have liked to read. It started with gruesome murders in a family and a man with a prior bad acts was the only suspect. Everybody believed he was guilty that when a judge tried to give the suspect a fair trial, suddenly the judge and the defense attorney became public enemies.

Our hero, Detective Kovac, almost fell in love with the judge and chased the wrong man throughout the book, thinking with his emotions.

At the beginning of the story, the readers were told that the main suspect happened to be at the wrong place, at the wrong time - so we could tolerate the judge's decision even though the characters in the book could not. I could guess the culprit by the middle of the book, but this was still an interesting read and better than 'Ashes to Ashes' and 'Dust to Dust'.