Terry Devane, Author UNCOMMON JUSTICE Terry Devane $24.95 (240p) ISBN 978-0-399-14717-3

This legal thriller about the murder of a homeless man in Boston hangs on a garden-variety plot, but it introduces two wonderfully original lead characters who more than make up for any narrative deficiencies. Out front is Mairead O'Clare, a highly earnest young lawyer who has just been fired by one of the city's top law firms because she had the honesty to admit the work bored her stiff. Going out on a limb, O'Clare takes a job in a one-man office run by Sheldon A. Gold, a shrewdly clever yet humble attorney who is at least as eccentric as his new hire. Though he knows she has no criminal law experience, Gold assigns O'Clare the defense of Alpha, a homeless man accused of bludgeoning a fellow bum to death. The well-spoken, highly literate Alpha instantly makes things tough for O'Clare. He says he's innocent and claims he knows who the real killer is, but refuses to reveal any details until he testifies at trial. The plot moves along efficiently and enjoyably to a finale that clunks and grinds a bit too much, but O'Clare and Gold have stolen the show long before. O'Clare is a fine creation. An orphan disfigured by port wine stains—a condition known as hemangioma—that cover everything below her elbows, she's overcome much in her life, and has an unassuming personality that tends to make opponents underestimate her. Gold is similarly fascinating. An independently wealthy former boxer, he's a man who has suffered much—the loss of a child, a wife who's gone mad, severe depression, even impotence. Together, O'Clare and Gold make a formidable, unpredictable and entertaining pair deserving of a return engagement. (Apr.)FYI:Devane is the pseudonym of an attorney and award-winning novelist who lives in Boston.

Reviewed on: 02/19/2001
Release date: 04/01/2001
Genre: Fiction
Mass Market Paperbound - 352 pages - 978-0-425-18424-0
Open Ebook - 352 pages - 978-1-101-20414-6
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