*Spoiler alerts.* What happens when our justice system fails? When an innocent man goes to jail? Seventeen years ago Beverly Thompson lost a case. Her client, Carl McClain, went to jail for murdering a prostitute. While she was admittedly new to being a lawyer, she felt like she had defended him to the best of her abilities- the evidence was simply stacked against him. Every once in a while she would think on that case, wonder if she could have done anything else. Years have gone by, though, and now she is happily married and a darn good lawyer. Everything is just as it should be… except…
Carl McClain spent seventeen years behind bars for a crime he didn’t commit. He lost his wife, access to his daughter-and the unborn child his wife aborted when he went to jail. His mother died while he was in jail. When the man that really murdered the woman comes forward and Carl is exonerated, there’s nothing left for him. Nothing but payback- and no one who had anything to do with his case is safe. He kidnaps Beverly, killing her husband and dog when they come to her rescue. Several jurors, the prosecutor and the judge. He knows he has to kill Beverly, but at first he wants her to suffer for her ineptitude. He keeps her, rapes her for days without ever telling her what she did to him. As he spends time with her, though, he starts to soften. Was he being fair to her? The others, surely they deserved what happened to them save her husband (and that was her fault for getting his attention); but had Beverly actually tried to help him? In the end, it doesn’t matter. He can’t let her go, not now.
Detective Sean Richardson already has his hands full with personal problems when one kill after another come to him. All linked to the same gun. Once he and his partner figure out what ties them all together it is a race against the clock to find McClain before he can finish his list.
On a personal note, I loved this story. It was eerie and painful, intense. The book had a nice, even flow as it went from one perspective to another, shuffling between the three main characters. Each character was well developed and interesting; none of them really throw-away characters. Even Carl, whom I was determined to hate, caught at my heart at times. Having lost everything would make anyone crazy. Seventeen years in prison is forever. Does that mean you make a death list and go on a shooting spree? Perhaps not, but there were also times where he was watching his daughter when he was a regular father. There was also a juror that he decided to pardon; I like to think it is because he felt sympathy for her. You can even see him begin feeling for Beverly. There is no pure evil here, even though there are evil acts. I like that.
This book is out- go get it.
On the adult content scale I have to give it a nine- for everything. Language, violence, sexual content… you name it.
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