cover image The Right to Remain Silent

The Right to Remain Silent

Charles Brandt. St. Martin's Press, $17.95 (275pp) ISBN 978-0-312-01372-1

The victim of a frame-up, Wilmington, Del., police sergeant Lou Razzi loses not only his job but also his wife and daughter when he is sent to prison. Fifteen years later a witness comes forward to clear Razzi, now out of jail and a successful opal miner in Brazil. Returning home, Razzi finds things have changed in Wilmington. His ex-wife has married into a prominent family and his daughter has been adopted by her stepfather. Police procedures, due to the Miranda decision, are different, too: the strong-arm tactics Razzi and his fellow officers once favored are no longer tolerated. When beautiful assistant D.A. Honey Gold decides to teach Razzi the new rules, the sergeant proves as smart and intuitive as he is tough. With Honey's help, he digs further into the incident for which he was framed. While Razzi's early suspicions are so close to the mark that the criminals' unmasking may not surprise readers, former prosecuting attorney Brandt has written a fast-moving first novel that takes a realistic look at the criminal justice system. (January 18)