Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Innocent by Scott Turow

InnocentInnocent by Scott Turow

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed this book. This is the sequel to Turow's Presumed Innocent and I never read the first book, but did see the movie adaptation with Harrison Ford. This story is told through the eyes of three main characters. Rusty Sabich (former prosecutor accused of murder in the first book) is now older and sits as a judge on the Court of Appeals and is running for the State Supreme Court. His son, Nat, is also a lawyer and trying to find his own place in the world and make sense of the relationship with his father. Then there is Tommy Molto, who is the prosecuting attorney from the previous book and current head of the prosecuting attorney's office.

The Story starts and then revolves around the death of Rusty's wife, Barbara, and the peculiar circumstance of Rusty waiting 24 hours before calling anyone about her death. This raises suspicions among the old nemesis from the first novel, Tommy Molto.  The story takes several interesting twists and turns from there and keeps you guessing the entire time. I found the trial portions of the book very compelling because of their accuracy and the time Turow spent explaining why lawyers make certain decisions and the inherent risks in each decision regarding the presentation of evidence at trial. I felt like a member of the trial team on both sides as they tried to make their best case and not step on land mines they knew were there.

The family dialogue was also very well done. These were imperfect people trying to explain their imperfections and hide things that they felt would not benefit from disclosure. The conversations felt real because they don't say everything they know and, especially when dealing with family, censor themselves in order to prevent hurting people they care about. As a reader you are kept on the edge wondering if they are going to drop the bombshell but understand don't because the justification is explained in the internal dialogue or previous construction of the character.  There are plenty of bombshells along the way, no matter how hard the characters try and keep them hidden.

Very well done.

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1 comment:

  1. Rusty Sabich remains a complex character with strengths, and more importantly, weaknesses that many of us will quickly relate to. Always striving to do the "right" thing he once again gives in to his most human frailties. Story line more than held my interest and Turow's complex plot keeps one wondering almost to the end. However, the book could easily have been fifty pages shorter and just as good.