By (author) William Landay
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Defending Jacob by William Landay
When a teenaged boy is discovered stabbed to death in the woods adjoining the local high school, a wave of shock ripples through the suburban community of Newton, outside of Boston. Assistant district attorney Andy Barber is used to dealing with murder and its after-effects, but with his own son, Jacob, also a student at the school, he too is anxious for a swift arrest and conviction. But as the kids appear to be stonewalling the cops and the investigation stalls, evidence emerges that ties Jacob to the crime - and suddenly Andy faces a very different challenge: preventing his son from being convicted of murder. Together with his wife, Laurie, the family closes ranks in the midst of an increasingly hostile community as Andy prepares for the trial of his life, the one trial he cannot afford to lose. Especially when the emergence of his own dark family secrets threatens to undermine Jacob's defence. And as the drama reaches its climax, Andy and Laurie have to face every parent's toughest questions: how well do you really know your own child, and how far would you go to save them?
Not since the novels of Scott Turow has a crime thriller - any thriller, though this too happens to be a literary legal thriller - shaken me by the throat like this. It's a stunning, shocking, emotionally harrowing ride in which the reader is plunged into a riveting but terrible murder trial and the heartbreaking implosion of a loving family. I had to lie down when I finished it (all too soon) to still my beating heart. ... What sets this apart from many thrillers is Landay's remarkable storytelling which allows him to craft the most sensational twists without forfeiting belief. But it's not just about suspense. Landay has written an unflinching account of the complexities of family life in a changing world -- Carla McKay DAILY MAIL 20120217 Landay clearly derives his premise from Scott Turow's prosecutor-in-the-dock thriller Presumed Innocent, and to say Defending Jacob is almost as good as Turow is high, not faint praise; the handling of Barber's voice is impeccable, the use of interwoven transcripts of his appearance before a grand jury is a distinctive and cunning device. THE SUNDAY TIMES 20120305 a clever blend of legal thriller and issue-oriented family implosion NEW YORK TIMES 20120213 This is a legal thriller worthy of mention in the same breath as Turow's masterpiece. A compelling read -- Marcel Berlins THE TIMES 20120317 Defending Jacob's skill as a psychological thriller is what we aren't told; we view Jacob via a parents eyes. And the books twist provides a chilling conclusion. STYLIST 20120320 Word of mouth on a new novel is not always to be trusted but sometimes a new book handsomely fulfils all the expectations. This is such a novel. ... If Turow's Presumed Innocent remains the definitive legal thriller, Defending Jacob is one of the most accomplished to have followed in its wake. A final word of advice. Tackle this quickly before friends start to discuss the shocking ending. -- Barry Forshaw DAILY EXPRESS 20120406 William Landay is being talked about as a new Scott Turow or John Grisham, having been one of Boston's district attorneys. He is at home with both the processes of detection and courtroom scenes ... a taut, tense, well-written thriller. LITERARY REVIEW 20120402 an excellent legal thriller ... Defending Jacob gets you by the throat precisely because of the skill with which Landay makes one identify with the increasingly terrified Barber as he attempts to ignore unpalatable facts about Jacob and marshals the evidence in favour of his son. THE OLDIE 20120702 Landay's first legal thriller makes Scott Turow and John Grisham seem like amateurs. -- Mark Sanderson EVENING STANDARD 20120705ISBN: 9781409115373
Classification: Crime & mystery
Format: Hardback (238mm x 159mm x 38mm)
Imprint: Orion (an Imprint of The Orion Publishing Group Ltd )
Publisher: Orion Publishing Co
Publish Date: 15-Mar-2012
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Comment on Defending Jacob by William Landay
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William Landay was an assistant district attorney before he turned to writing. He lives in Boston.
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