cover image The Fall

The Fall

John Lescroart. Atria, $26.99 (320p) ISBN 978-1-4767-0921-5

San Francisco attorney Dismas Hardy’s grown daughter, Rebecca, plays a central role in bestseller Lescroart’s subpar 19th series legal thriller (after 2014’s The Keeper). When 17-year-old Anlya Paulson, an African-American, dies after falling from an overpass into the path of a motorist, the police quickly conclude that she was pushed to her death. Rebecca, who now works for her father’s law firm, happens to be with middle school teacher Greg Treadway, in the bar her father owns, when word of the tragedy reaches Greg. Greg, who had dinner with Anlya on the last night of her life, becomes the prime suspect. The police and DA’s office are under political pressure to move quickly because of accusations that the authorities aren’t pursuing killers of African-Americans hard enough, and Greg, who is white, is soon arrested and facing trial. Rebecca, also white, is convinced he’s innocent and decides to defend him. That defense, of course, involves some amateur sleuthing to identify the real killer, complete with coincidences that strain belief and an action-packed resolution outside of the courtroom. Agent: Barney Karpfinger, Karpfinger Agency. (May)