Book recommendation: 'The Lincoln Lawyer' by Michael Connelly
It's always good to welcome a Michael Connelly novel, and The Lincoln Lawyer is a strong addition to the Connelly bookshelf. This stand-alone legal thriller has all the adroit plotting and no-nonsense prose that are Connelly's trademarks, with a particularly strong protagonist.
In the hierarchy of American lawyers, ‘Lincoln lawyers’ are not held in the highest esteem. These are criminal defence attorneys who run their practices from a travelling Lincoln car, traversing the county of Los Angeles to hoover up whatever work is available, however basic. Connelly's tarnished hero is Mickey Heller, who has fine-tuned this less-than-impressive side of the legal profession to such a degree that few can match him: he knows all the ins and outs of the system, including precisely who to slip a back-hander to when appropriate. But Mickey finds a way to move upmarket when he acquires a well-heeled client. A rich young man from Beverly Hills has been arrested for savagely assaulting a woman, and the case falls in Mickey's lap. And though the lawyer is used to defending clients who are guilty as sin, it actually looks (for once) that his client is innocent. But Lincoln lawyers like Mickey are fully aware of the lottery that is their profession, and he isn't too surprised when the case goes pear-shaped. But (to his dismay) Mickey slowly learns that neither his client nor the victim in the case is quite what they seem to be, and soon there's a lot more than a penny-ante case at stake, with Mickey's life quite as much at risk as any reputation he might have.
Connelly fans (an ever-growing army) will be pleased to hear that all the customary traits are fully on offer here, with one key component even more finely honed than usual: the gritty, idiomatic dialogue, which is richer and more entertaining than usual.
Available from Amazon.co.uk