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Guilt (Abe Glitsky) Hardcover – May 12, 1997
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As the Dooher trial begins, dozens of lives are drawn into the drama, from the men and women who knew Mark Dooher best to those whose fates are now entwined with his. For Wes Farrell, an attorney struggling with his own sense of failure, the defense of Mark Dooher will mean a chance at self-respect. For beautiful, aspiring attorney Christina Carrera, the case leads to a dangerous liaison with Dooher, who has wanted more than anything to have this woman by his side and in his bed. And for Abe Glitsky, whose wife is dying of cancer, the trial is a nightmare of DNA evidence, shaky witnesses, and long odds: Dooher, the unofficial consigliere of the Archbishop of San Francisco, has the Catholic Church on his side.
As the trial builds to a crescendo, as evidence is sifted and witnesses discredited, as Farrell rises to heights he never knew he could reach and Abe Glitsky grieves, a woman emerges from Mark Dooher's past. Her story will change the role of nearly every player in this trial, and ignite a chain reaction of truth and violence that will alter lives forever.
A novel that surprises from its first page to its last, Guilt is more than a story about crime and punishment. It is a riveting drama of moral responsibility and uncertain justice, of families bound by loyalty and divided by tragedy and betrayal. Building to one of the most nerve-shattering endings in recent fiction, Guilt is a true masterpiece of hard-hitting, contemporary suspense.
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From Library Journal
-?Melissa Kuzma Rokicki, NYPL
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.
- Publisher : Delacorte Press; First Edition (May 12, 1997)
- Language : English
- Hardcover : 480 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0385316550
- ISBN-13 : 978-0385316552
- Item Weight : 1.75 pounds
- Dimensions : 6.75 x 1.75 x 10 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #373,521 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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Here's a brief summary of the long-drawn-out plot. (WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD!) Our villain (Mark Dooher) is one of San Francisco's most successful attorneys, with his own firm and a bunch of subservient associates at his beck and call. His best friend (Wes Farrell) is a struggling attorney with a one-man office. Dooher and Farrell are enjoying lunch at a restaurant when Dooher spots a beautiful woman (Christina) and instantly decides he'll do anything to possess her, even though he's been married to Sheila for decades. He can't divorce Sheila; he's a Catholic, and the Archdiocese is one of his best clients. What can he do with a wife who stands in the way of his happiness?
Kill her, of course! No big deal, because this wealthy, respected, supposedly brilliant attorney is actually a killer, though he's managed to conceal it from everyone for years. As a platoon leader during the Vietnam War, he sold heroin to the guys in his platoon. When most of them died from an overdose of bad heroin, he killed the dealer by stabbing him with a bayonet and wiping the blade on the victim's clothing. Fast forward to the present, when he uses the same bayonet to kill an attorney (Trang) who's threatening to file a sizable claim against Dooher's best client, the Archdiocese. Again, Dooher wipes the bayonet on the victim's clothing. (Who said this guy was smart?) Our hero (Abe Glitsky) investigates the murder of Trang and suspects Dooher, but he has no real evidence.
So far, so good for our villain. We've managed to wade through 50% of this dreary tale. But hold on. It gets worse. Christina--the object of Dooher's lust--finishes law school and goes to work at his firm. Poor Christina. She makes lots of bad decisions. In college, she had an affair with a married professor, got pregnant, and had an abortion after he dumped her. Searching for true love, she gets engaged to an attorney in Dooher's firm, but she breaks up with him when Dooher shows an interest in her. Christina spends a lot of time feeling sorry for herself. She got no sympathy from me.
Anyway, when Dooher's wife is poisoned and stabbed with a knife that's wiped on her clothing, Glitsky draws logical conclusions (because Glitsky is smart). Dooher is arrested and brought to trial for his wife's murder; he's naturally defended by Wes Farrell and the lovely (and clueless) Christina. The trial crawls along for nearly 200 convoluted pages of testimony and so-called evidence (the vial of blood!) that prove nothing at all. I skimmed though much of it and didn't miss a thing. Surprise! Dooher is acquitted.
That should be the end of it, right? Wrong! Dooher marries Christina, but it's not a happy union. She finally wises up and begins to believe he actually killed his wife. So does Wes Farrell, who ends their lifelong friendship. Dooher's law firm falls apart due to the trial's negative publicity. Christina--heavily pregnant with Dooher's baby--flees for her life after he rapes her. (Seems he's raped before, back in his college days.) Dooher loses his mind completely and decides to kill Wes Farrell before he goes after Christina. Will Abe Glitsky stop him in time?
My advice? Skip the whole boring trial and jump to Chapter 50, where the ending is fairly exciting. Or better yet, save yourself some boredom and skip the whole book. I wish I had. Even Abe Glitsky's skills couldn't save this sorry plot, but he managed to raise my rating from one star to two.