Synopses & Reviews
A sensational murder trial! A young woman found naked and stabbed to death in her apartment! The woman was the girlfriend of his boss, Richard Rosenberg, and the hotshot lawyer is charged with killing her. Now Richard's in court fighting for his life, and Stanley's out on the firing line trying to dig up some evidence in his favor. It won't be easy. The murdered woman was a law clerk for a prominent judge, and everyone Stanley needs to question is currently tied up in a high-profile Global Banking trial. As Stanley races back and forth between two courtrooms, searching for the key to the mystery through investigative techniques that could easily get him charged as an accessory, every fact tends to point to Richard's guilt: DNA evidence proves he is the man who had sex with the victim just before she died, eyewitnesses put him at the scene of the crime, and his fingerprints are on the murder weapon. In desperation, Richard resorts to a series of courtroom tactics so outrageous they would make Perry Mason blush. Before the case is over, everyone in the courtroom will be convinced that not only does Richard Rosenberg have a fool for a client, but the client has a fool for a lawyer.
"In Edgar-finalist Hall's frenetic 20th mystery featuring New York City PI Stanley Hastings (after 2014's Safari), Stanley's boss, leading negligence attorney Richard Rosenberg, decides to defend himself after being charged with his girlfriend's murder. It's up to Stanley to uncover the evidence that will clear Richard. The rapid-fire banter between the pair may owe a lot to the Warner Bros. flicks of the '30s (when Stanley asks Richard if he's in trouble, Richard answers, 'No, I fell going into my office and I'm suing myself for negligence'). In fact, most characters converse as if auditioning for a remake of His Girl Friday. Stanley's investigation pauses periodically for deconstruction by his acerbic wife, Alice. Nora Charles, she isn't. Once Hall moves into the courtroom for the trial, pleasures can be found in Richard's swashbuckling style and canny, if farfetched, legal maneuvers. But here, too, Hall employs too many arch exchanges. This overreliance on sarcastic dialogue may leave the reader ready to sue for less zip and more substance." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"In a dry comic voice, Stanley narrates this account of his furtive investigation into three murders that the other tourists observe with remarkable sang-froid." Marilyn Stasio
"Hall's smooth style, ready sense of humor, and unusual take on murders in an untamed yet confined setting provide an enjoyable outing for armchair travelers." Publishers Weekly
"The Stanley Hastings mysteries depend on subversively sly wordplay. In the violently verbal world he inhabits, Stanley would be happy just to win an argument." The New York Times Book Review (on 'Safari')
"Stanley's cases have going for them some of the deftest and trickiest puzzle-plotting in the field today." The New York Times Book Review (on 'Caper')
"Parnell Hall succeeds in making Stanley Hastings one of a kind." Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine (on 'Blackmail')
"Pleasures can be found in the swashbuckling style and canny legal maneuvers." Publishers Weekly
A young woman found naked and stabbed to death in her apartment. It's the type of case that should be perfect for Stanley Hastings. Instead, it's his nightmare.
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