Cose, Ellis The Best Defense

ISBN 13: 9780060930875

The Best Defense

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9780060930875: The Best Defense

Justice Isn't Always Black and White

Cutthroat defense attorney and rising celebrity Felicia Fontaine is about to tackle her biggest--and seemingly most unwinnable--case yet, defending a white businessman accused of killing an office rival, a Hispanic man promoted over him. With her reputation and confidence on the line, the ever-savvy Felicia needs to watch her every step to successfully get through this controversial case dubbed the "Affirmative Action Murder" by a salacious press. She won't get any breaks from the prosecution, though, for the DA is none other than her toughest adversary, and former flame, Mario Santiago, a smart, ethical professional who'll do what it takes--even if it means risking his new marriage--to win a conviction.


Thrust into the spotlight of a critical and unrelenting media, under the wary eyes of a divided country, these two passionate lawyers will face off in a trial that will explore the deceptive difference between justice and revenge--a case where truth has no meaning against outrage, envy, ambition, and desire. A case you will never forget.

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Review:

Ellis Cose has written so many books and magazine articles on issues of race, work, and gender that it should come as no surprise to find that his first fictional outing is a legal thriller about a killing caused by affirmative action. What is surprising is the amount of suspense Cose can conjure up by being scrupulously fair to all sides of a complex and explosive issue. When John Wisocki, a white computer-training expert, shoots the Hispanic coworker who got his job after a corporate takeover, his first move is to hire Felicia Fontaine--an African American defense attorney whose response to the constant cry of "We never seem to get our due" (from what she calls "a whole motley tribe of the so-called disadvantaged who were unsure of how to get ahead in life") is "We get what we know how to demand." Does Felicia really believe Wisocki's story that he was planning to shoot himself when the coworker got in his way? Or, as her prosecutorial opponent and ex-lover Mario Santiago puts it, is it a case of "You're damned good at playing the game, but you don't particularly care about the people involved. Sometimes I wonder whether you care about right and wrong." Before the case is over (and even after), Felicia and most readers of Cose's smart, heartfelt novel will find lots of their preconceived notions taken out for a brisk airing. --Dick Adler

About the Author:

Ellis Cose, author, contributing editor of Newsweek magazine, and former, chairman of the editorial board and editorial page editor of the New York Daily News, began his journalism career at the age of nineteen as a columnist for the Chicago Sun-Times. Cose has been a contributor to, and press critic of, Time magazine, president and chief executive officer of the Institute of Jouranlism Educaton, chief writer on management and workplace issues for USA Today, and a memeber of the editorial board of the Detroit Free Press. He is the author of The Rage of a Privileged Class, A Nation of Strangers, and The Press. He lives in Manhattan with his wife, Lee Llambelis, an assistant district attorney.


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Cose, Ellis
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