‘The Murder List’ is compelling story by Hank Phillippi Ryan

“The Murder List” (Forge), by Hank Phillippi Ryan

Jack North is one of the best criminal defense attorneys in Boston. His reputation precedes him, and he’s known for applying tough but legal tactics for his clients. His nemesis on the other side of the courtroom is District Attorney Martha Gardiner. She’s battled Jack on several occasions, and while there is mutual respect, they personally despise each other. Jack’s wife, Rachel, is a law student who is offered a prestigious internship. However, it means working for Gardiner.

Can Rachel balance her work with her personal life? Will she be forced to choose sides when a case she works on for Martha puts her in conflict with her husband? Does the truth matter when it’s in the pursuit of justice? And is having a winning case more important than uncovering the facts? These are examples of philosophical questions that readers are confronted within “The Murder List,” a complicated and rewarding dive into the world of legal machinations by Hank Phillippi Ryan.

Ryan is a master at telling stories that showcase the human element of crime and tragedy. The narrative jumps back and forth between the past and present, but it works more effectively than if Ryan wrote the story in linear fashion. “The Murder List” is her best book to date, and the underlying mystery will baffle even the most savvy crime fiction and legal thriller readers. Jeff Ayers, AP

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