Saturday, March 10, 2012
Publisher: original publication -Mira (2003), 352 pages
Audio format : Blackstone Audio, 8 hrs, 15 min
Narrator: Anna Fields
Subject: Criminal investigation
Setting: Eugene Oregon
Series: Barbara Holloway novels #7
Genre: mystery, legal defense and investigation
Source: audio download from public library
Recommended? Yes - a great read for mystery fans, particularly those who like strong female protagonists
Since 2012 is my year to concentrate on Histories and Mysteries (oh hurt me!!) I was delighted to come across this one in the Barbara Holloway series. I've read several of these but never seem to read more than one or two a year--there are actually 12 of them, so I have some catching up to do. I really like the main character in these books. Barbara Holloway is a defense attorney in Eugene Oregon. She has gone through several different phases of "lawyering" but seems to be settling down to criminal defense in her father's venerable law firm. While she sometimes chafes at being in the family firm, she does enjoy her father's company and advise.
Normally Wilhelms's Holloway stories revolve around Barbara's taking on impossible cases and finally proving the accused to be innocent, etc etc. Here we are presented with a very different quandry. Barbara is hired by the Board of Directors of a non-profit clinic to find out whether or not one or both of two different people associated with the clinic are guilty of murdering one of the clinic's Directors. The identity and conviction of the guilty party(s) is ultimately going to decide whether the clinic will continue in existence. It's a somewhat confusing and convoluted scenario that demands the reader pay close attention to the strands of who did what, and when and to whom. In addition, Barbara must then face the decision that she will be called upon to defend a client she has been hired to prove guilty!!!
The story resolves itself well with a very surprise ending, but not before taking us on the usual Kate Wilhelm roller coaster of blind alleys, red herrings and fun.
It's a great series, and I look forward to reading more of them in the months and years to come.