cover image Client Privilege

Client Privilege

William G. Tapply. Delacorte Press, $16.95 (260pp) ISBN 978-0-385-29903-9

This is the ninth in Tapply's solidly appealing series, related by Boston attorney Brady Coyne. Acting on behalf of his client and best friend, Judge Popowski (Pops), Coyne meets a TV reporter, Wayne Churchill, who threatens the judge's virtually certain appointment to the federal courts. Implicitly trusting the judge's statement that the newsman has no real grounds for blackmail, Coyne refuses Churchill's demand of $10,000 for his silence. The reporter's murder that same night brings the police to question the attorney, who, standing on client privilege, withholds Pops's name and therefore risks his own arrest as the killer. The circumstances force Coyne to search for the guilty party in order to clear himself, and it's a disheartening task, burdened by his nagging doubts about his friend. Could Pops have killed the man and set up Coyne for the crime? Slowly grinding away at the case, the lawyer learns the shocking facts that permanently affect all concerned. Mystery Guild selection. (May)