Robak's Fire

Joe L. Hensley, Author
Joe L. Hensley, Author Doubleday Books $12.95 (182p) ISBN 978-0-385-23359-0
Reviewed on: 01/01/1986
Release date: 01/01/1986
Ace criminal lawyer Don Robak (Robak's Cross is called to a small midwest town to help a couple of partners in his firm with a puzzling civil case. Their client, an insurance company, maintains that Avery Benjamin did not die in a fire and refuses to pay death benefits. Benjamin's sons and second wife are suing for millions. Some of the insurance company's witnesses, who gave dispositions saying they saw Benjamin after his supposed ""death,'' are now changing their stories. The law firm, further stymied by a hostile judge and a suspicious populace, needs Robak to find out what's going on. Among other things, several suspicious fires occur, the redneck sheriff (involved in a torrid affair with the ``widow'') shows great animosity toward Robak, and Benjamin's sons are two very nasty offspring. The legal background, interesting plot and varied characters all work well here. Hensley, a judge, is especially appealing in his accurate, affectionate rendition of rural speech. (November 7)
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