Defending Jacob by William Landay- 451 pages
Andy Barber has been an assistant district attorney in his suburban Massachusetts county for more than twenty years. He is respected in his community, tenacious in the courtroom, and happy at home with his wife, Laurie, and son, Jacob. But when a shocking crime shatters their New England town, Andy is blindsided by what happens next: His fourteen-year-old son is charged with the murder of a fellow student.
Every parental instinct Andy has rallies to protect his boy. Jacob insists that he is innocent, and Andy believes him. Andy must. He’s his father. But as damning facts and shocking revelations surface, as a marriage threatens to crumble and the trial intensifies, as the crisis reveals how little a father knows about his son, Andy will face a trial of his own—between loyalty and justice, between truth and allegation, between a past he’s tried to bury and a future he cannot conceive.
My Review: 4 stars
Phenomenal character driven book filled with dollops of suspense kept the pages turning in this fast paced legal thriller. I was so happy there was another woman reading this book at the pool while I was on vacation; I wanted (needed) to discuss it along the way. Family loyalties are tested to the brink in the book as is the (im)perfection of the legal system. This author deeply understood the characters he was writing about, as his son’s dialogue was pitch perfect for his age. I’m truly interested in the murder gene concept and hope to learn more about it. This novel would be a great for a book club discussion.
Quotes I liked:
A liberal, it turns out , is a conservative who’s been indicted.”
– “The Web is a prosecutor’s fantasy, a monitoring and recording device that hears the most intimate, lurid secrets, even those never spoken out loud. It’s better than a wire. It is a wire planted inside everyone’s head.
– “who among us would be judged by the dumbest things we did as teenagers?”
– “I find it touching and almost naive how complete is my wife’s faith in communication and connection. To her, there is virtually no problem that does not benefit from a little talk-talk-talk.”