by Cynthia Chow
Details at the end of this post on how to win a copy of The Bomb Maker’s Son, along with a link to purchase the book where a portion goes to support KRL & an indie bookstore.
Having previously been attacked in his condo’s underground garage, attorney Parker Stern is prepared for the worst when he’s startled there by a woman with a covered face. For Parker, an actual beating would have been preferable to a visit by his mother Harriet. Now calling herself Quiana Gottshalk, she’s a self-declared elder of the Church of the Sanctified Assembly, a cult that abused and embezzled money from Parker while he was a child actor.
Now that Parker is ironically afflicted with glossophobia, a paralyzing stage fright that occurs whenever he is in court, he rarely appears in the courtroom. Maternal solely by biology, Parker’s mother lures him to into accepting Ian Holzner as a client, with the promise of finally answering his questions about his life.
Although Holzner admits to leading the Holzner-O’Brien gang that bombed nine federal facilities, he denies Rachel O’Brien’s testimony that he was complicit in the one the killed four people at the Playa Delta Veteran’s Administration in 1975. After forty years on the run, Holzner has decided to finally turn himself into the authorities while still declaring his innocence. The real explosive secret for Parker, though, is that Holzner is also his father!
Harriet arranges for Parker to work as co-counsel with Lou Frantz, a top trial attorney and Parker’s frequent nemesis. Frantz is also Lovely Diamond’s boss; she’s the woman who broke Parker’s heart. Further complicating matters is that Ian Holzner definitely has his own agenda, and he plans to make the courtroom his pulpit. This is not what Parker expected when he thought about spending time bonding with his father.
Wry humor emerges with a geriatric militant private investigator who lives up to his name—Moses—but whose beliefs took a 180-degree turn after September 11. As Parker and Lovely settle into Moses’s office, they meet his equally opinionated former secretary-turned-wife, as well as the radical participants of events that happened forty years ago.
The courtrooms have become theaters, and the author entertainingly if ironically depicts the manipulation and showmanship of lawyers and judges who make winning the goal more than actual justice. Jury selection, witness interrogations, and Parker’s own investigations all become as fascinating as his own attempts to suppress his conflicting need to deal with his personal turmoil.
This series continues to be one of the most complex and entertaining legal thrillers written today. Parker remains a fascinating character and is a brilliant attorney, despite his emotional vulnerability and damaged childhood. Suspense, witty dialogue, and characters who might not lie (but also never tell the entire truth), all ensure that this is a novel that resonates long after its shocking finale.
To enter to win a copy of The Bomb Maker’s Son, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line “Bomb,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen August 1, 2015. U.S. residents only. If entering via email please include your mailing address, and if via comment please include your email address.
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Click on this link to purchase this book and a portion goes to help support KRL & Mysterious Galaxy: