This is a pretty good contemporary mystery/thriller. Jessica “Jay” Wells is a high-profile criminal defense attorney outside of London. She is married to Tom, a criminal barrister, and they have two college-aged children. When Edward Blake, a well-known architect and developer, is arrested for allegedly killing his wife, Jay is hired by the family to represent him. The family insists that there is no way that Ed killed his wife, and are desperate for Jay to free him.
Edward is not Jay’s typical client. He does not seem cold, hard, cruel or manipulative. Her heart goes out to him and her gut tells her he’s innocent. As Jay begins to investigate the murder and try to clear Edward from the crime, she gets the sense that the family is hiding something. Slowly Jay pierces the family’s secrets, but is it enough to set Edward free? As Jay deals with Edward’s case, she uncovers secrets in her own family as well, and like Edward’s, it will never be the same again.
Overall, I enjoyed this book. I did have issues with the uneven pacing. The book started off fairly well, but as it alternated between Jay’s case and her family troubles, the momentum dragged. Without going into spoilers, the secrets of Jay’s family was not unexpected or original, and took up far too much time of the book. I didn’t need to know every inner thought that she had, and better editing to shrink down this part of the book would greatly help it. Clocking in at 512 pages, this book would be better served at around 400 pages instead.
The twists and turns of Edward’s case were written better. While some of the twists were predictable, others were not. Where the author really lost me was in Jay’s actions toward the last third of the book. They seemed so completely out of character and inconsistent with her behavior in the rest of the book, I just didn’t buy it.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from NetGalley and HarperCollins. All opinions are my own.