James Gabriel Berman, Author
James Gabriel Berman, Author Warner Books $16.95 (223p) ISBN 978-0-446-51861-1
Reviewed on: 04/03/1995
Release date: 04/01/1995
Mass Market Paperbound - 978-0-446-60329-4
Show other formats
On the affluent Long Island Gold Coast, socially prominent housewife Patricia Carver, 27, and her two small children are found dead in their baronial home, apparently victims of a multiple murder/suicide that ended with her husband, 56, firing a bullet into his temple. Six months later, Tony McMahon, a pathetic young loner from a nearby rundown township is arrested and--based upon highly circumstantial evidence--charged with the killings. The motherless son of an alcoholic, Tony, as we learn through flashbacks, had in adolescence launched a worshipful and unrequited relationship with Patricia. Now the sensational crime has attracted a swarm of hotshot attorneys. Tony, friendless and broke, chooses as his defender Ralph Barolo, a flamboyant and streetwise lawyer who regards pleading before a jury as a wily game of sexual seduction. As the disturbing pathology of Tony's obsession is subtly revealed, the suspense builds regarding his guilt or innocence. As much a study in abnormal psychology as a telling look at social discrimination in the criminal justice system, this impressive--if at times slightly less than polished--tale is compelling to the end. 25,000 first printing. (May)