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The Mourning Sexton: A Novel of Suspenseby Michael Baron
Synopses & Reviews
In this deft, multilayered thriller, a disgraced lawyer trying to revive his tattered career stumbles across a hidden case of cold-blooded murder and discovers that he must pursue justice even though doing so might just cost him what little he has left — possibly even his life.
Attorney David Hirsch was the managing partner of one of St. Louis's most prestigious law firms, until he was convicted of embezzlement and sent to the federal penitentiary for seven years. He emerges from prison humbled and genuinely contrite, eager to patch things up with his estranged daughter and to build up a modest legal practice. In forging his life afresh, Hirsch has rediscovered his Judaism and has become part of the daily minyan, the group of ten men necessary to pray together, at the synagogue near his home. When an elderly man in the group asks for his help with a product liability case involving his daughter's death, Hirsch reluctantly takes it on — only to discover that the seemingly straightforward lawsuit conceals a cold-blooded murder.
With the help of Dulcie Lorenz, the altruistic, public-spirited attorney the dead woman worked for, Hirsch pursues the liability case while quietly amassing evidence against the highly placed person he suspects of murder. His attempt to bring his powerful adversary to justice draws Hirsch into a fierce, seesawing battle of wits — and ultimately to an act that expresses the true depth of his atonement.
A page-turner in the tradition of Scott Turow, The Mourning Sexton goes beyond the question of "who done it" to explore the more intriguing questions of why the crime was committed and what it reveals about human nature. Set against the richly textured backdrops of St. Louis's legal establishment and the city's tight-knit Jewish community, and animated by a vivid cast of characters, it marks the debut of an extraordinary new talent.
"This debut novel by a pseudonymous St. Louis attorney will appeal to Scott Turow fans. Hirsch, a multidimensional, clearly flawed hero, has the makings of a fine series lead." Booklist
"Michael Baron...has no trouble making the legal aspects of the story sound authentic. The courtrooms come alive in his deft hands, with rich characters that texture The Mourning Sexton with a lush feeling of realism." BookReporter.com
"Attractive and credible characters in slightly-less-credible circumstances." Kirkus Reviews
"There is a maxim in the legal profession that the law does not concern itself with trifles, and Michael Baron, in his wonderful story, does not concern himself with trifles. The Mourning Sexton shows what the law is really supposed to be about — morality, atonement, responsibility, and redemption. A truly original legal thriller by a fresh, new voice." Nelson DeMille
"The Mourning Sexton is an original thriller with a clever plot and a complex and fascinating hero; a good read that is difficult to put down." Phillip Margolin, author of Lost Lake
"Michael Baron has penned an extraordinarily nuanced novel that other writers will be alluding to with envy for years to come." Jeremiah Healy, author of Invasion Of Privacy and Turnabout
In this deft, multilayered thriller, a disgraced lawyer trying to revive his tattered career discovers that exacting justice in a complicated murder case demands something far more personal than a well-honed display of legal expertise in the courtroom. Set against the richly textured backdrops of St. Louis's legal establishment and the city's tight-knit Jewish community, and animated by a vivid cast of characters, it marks the debut of an extraordinary new talent.
About the Author
Michael Baron is a pseudonym for an attorney in St. Louis, Missouri. This is his first novel.
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