I have enjoyed reading John T. Lescroart’s well crafted legal thrillers for years. The problem with bringing the same characters back again and again is that it’s hard to suspend disbelief as the adventures pile on in a single lifetime. This is less of a problem if the main characters are lawyers and police detectives, as in this case. The advantage, for both author and readers, is that the characters develop over a longer period of time than is possible in a single book and acquire distinct personalities. Lescroart also sticks to his home town, San Fransisco, allowing him to set the background for his plots with confidence and plenty of detail.
I enjoyed this book especially for two reasons. It was a definite page-turner that kept me up to finish, and as an earlier book, it introduced the familiar characters, lawyer Dismas Hardy and police detective Abraham Glitsky, at an early stage of their lives and careers. My only complaint is that, long as it is, it ended too soon. There is both a murder mystery and a courtroom drama, but I had the impression that Lescroart got tired of his story before I did – he winds up the courtroom part of the drama very suddenly, without letting the reader savor the good guy’s victory.