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Friday, November 5, 2010

Fatal Convictions by Randy Singer

Civil attorney\part-time pastor Alex Madison makes his living preaching the Word of God and offering his services to patients in hospital beds. However, one of these such incidents changes the face of his career. While visiting the room of a Muslim car accident victim, Alex saw a typical opportunity, but not the groundbreaking case it would eventually become. After taking on the woman’s case, her husband is accused of ordering an honor killing, sparking one of the most heated and publicized court cases of the year. The question is this: did the quiet and reserved Muslim imam, who calls himself a Muslim reformer, order the death of a Muslim woman who converted to Christianity and the man who converted her? Alex takes his case because he believes his client is innocent, but what he soon discovers is that this case is dangerous. Alex soon finds himself fighting not only for his reputation, but for his life.

As is his custom, Randy Singer wrote a book that appeared to be a typical legal thriller he should have never written, but once again, he proved us wrong. Though on the surface Fatal Convictions looks like a run-of-the-mill plot, it is really run-of-the-mill Randy Singer.

As usual, Alex Madison is an exemplary lead, not a perfect and downtrodden attorney looking for a big case to lift his head out of the mud. Alex is actually far from perfect. The defendant is not a perfect victim, the prosecutor is not a belligerent criminal, and the judge is not a biased idiot. If Randy Singer has anything above other legal authors, it is his characters.

On the surface, this plot looks highly typical: an impossible case with international ramifications. It appears this way all the way up until the end. That’s when Randy Singer starts going crazy, placing one character with the enemies, while proving an enemy innocent. Kill one off here, save one there. In the end, the outcome is surprising yet is packaged with a purpose. Randy Singer proved us all wrong once again.

Randy Singer has reached a point in his career where he is not exhausted his store of ideas, but keeps slowly giving us another groundbreaking novel each year. He’s a role that does not appear to be ending any time soon.

5 stars

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