cover image Wrongful Death

Wrongful Death

Robert Dugoni, . . Touchstone, $25 (366pp) ISBN 978-1-4165-9100-9

At the start of bestseller Dugoni's fast-paced second legal thriller to feature Seattle attorney David Sloane (after The Jury Master ), the plaintiff's lawyer, who's won an astonishing 18 jury verdicts in a row, agrees to take on a wrongful-death claim with a strong emotional tug. Beverly Ford, the widow of a national guardsman killed during the second Iraq War, is convinced her husband perished as a result of inadequate body armor. Sloane soon learns that established case law makes the prospect of victory over the federal government practically impossible. When the lawyer discovers that other members of Ford's platoon have died under strange circumstances since returning to the U.S., he begins to suspect a conspiracy to conceal the truth. While Dugoni does a good job of conveying litigation tactics, predictable situations—Sloane's crusade endangers his wife and stepson—are a reminder that the author's forte is page-turning action, not imaginative plotting. (Apr.)