cover image Trell


Dick Lehr. Candlewick, $17.99 (320p) ISBN 978-0-7636-9275-9

In precise, economical prose, former reporter Lehr (Black Mass) recounts a suspenseful story inspired by a case he investigated in the 1980s. Fourteen-year-old Trell Taylor was just a baby when her father, Romero, was wrongly convicted of murdering a 13-year-old girl. Since then, things have been difficult for Trell and her mother, but two important adults—Nora, a rookie attorney, and Clemens, a seasoned reporter for the Boston Globe—believe that there’s a chance for Romero’s release if they can gather evidence that his trial was unfair. Trell is determined to help, but finding proof of her father’s innocence isn’t easy when witnesses have disappeared over the years or are reluctant to speak out. Set in Boston’s Roxbury district, the novel traces Trell’s quest to find information, an arduous and dangerous search that uncovers some harsh truths about her father’s criminal past and some disturbing facts about gang lords and police corruption. Without sugarcoating city violence, Lehr presents facts about the case in terms readers will understand while providing enough exciting discoveries and triumphs to offset Trell’s disappointments. Ages 12–up. Agent: Richard Abate, 3 Arts Entertainment. (Sept.)