To Speak for the Dead

Paul Levine, Author Bantam Books $17.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-553-05747-8
Attorney Levine's lively fiction debut introduces Jake Lassiter, ex-jock turned Miami trial lawyer. Jake defends Dr. Roger Salisbury in a civil malpractice suit brought by gorgeous young Melanie Corrigan, widow of wealthy developer Philip Corrigan. The dead man's daughter, sportswriter Susan Corrigan, is not happy with Roger's acquittal, and tells Jake that Melanie conspired with his client to murder her father, using the lawsuit to divert attention from their relationship. As Jake considers Susan's suspicions, the widow makes a new accusation (while nearly naked), incriminating Roger but letting herself off the hook. Needing tangible proof, Jake and his friend Charlie Riggs, a retired coroner, and Susan clandestinely exhume Philip's body and, after foraging in the dark amid concrete tombs, sneak off with not one body but two. The grave theft alerts the city prosecutor to new clues, and he arrests Roger for murder, leaving Jake in the middle of a baffling whodunit. Levine spins his tale briskly, his use of medical evidence and legal argument heightening the excitement rather than weighing it down. Two more Jake Lassiter novels are to follow; that's good news. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 07/01/1990
Release date: 07/01/1990
Mass Market Paperbound - 400 pages - 978-0-553-29172-8
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