Steve Martini The Arraignment

ISBN 13: 9780515135251

The Arraignment

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9780515135251: The Arraignment

[Read by Erik Bergmann]

Steve Martini has crafted yet another legal nail-biter in The Arraignment, featuring perennial favorite Paul Madriani. -- After a lawyer-friend is killed along with his client in a hail of gunfire outside the federal courthouse in San Diego, attorney Paul Madriani takes on another client he believes is involved at the edges of the double murder. He takes the case not to defend the man but to find out who killed his friend and why. Paul is tortured by questions of conflict, his duty to a client who may have killed his friend, and the need to know the truth, wondering whether he himself had been marked for death only to have a friend die in his place. Paul finds himself with a window into places he never wanted to go, drawn into a vortex of crime that spans the Americas. -- As he searches for the killer, Paul rides the crest of a dangerous wave involving international drug deals and the people who murder for money. Suddenly he realizes it is not heroin or cocaine that resulted in the murder of his friend but a priceless piece of pre-Columbian art, something so dazzling in the information it holds as to be one of the treasures of the ages. -- In a quest that takes Paul from California to Mexico and the Guatemalan border, he discovers that while the motive to kill may be driven by distant, exotic, and ancient artifacts, the killer, like a serpent, lies much closer at hand.

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Review:

When Paul Madriani's old friend, flamboyant criminal-defense lawyer Nick Rush, is gunned down on the streets of San Diego along with a client, Madriani sets out to find the killer. He follows the trail through shady real-estate dealings, cross-border smuggling, political corruption, and a nasty fight between Rush's ex and his young trophy wife over a hefty life-insurance policy. Eventually the case leads Madriani to the Yucatan Peninsula near Cancún, where the last third of the book takes place--a dandy locale for skullduggery, even if it does make you suspect that the author thought up the plot while vacationing there.

The Arraignment is marred by some sloppy, foggy-headed writing ("The neighborhood exudes the kind of aura picked up by a sixth sense that lingers and lifts the hair on the back of my neck"), and the plot, after its initial bang, sags for a while before it gets moving again. However, the sheer vigor of Martini's prose, his densely inventive plotting, and his sharply drawn characters carry you happily, tensely along. The book's action scenes--including a hand-to-hand fight in a shabby apartment and an unforgettable poolside shooting at a Cancún resort--are told in fresh, vivid prose that unfolds with hypnotic clarity. And the denouement is great fun, although the complex plot takes a lot of explaining at the end. Martini's not perfect, but he's still one of the best legal/adventure thriller writers going. --Nicholas H. Allison

About the Author:

Steve Martini was born in San Francisco and grew up in Southern California. An honors graduate of the University of California at Santa Cruz, he worked as a newspaper reporter in Los Angeles and as a correspondent at the California State Capitol in Sacramento, specializing in legal issues. After obtaining his law degree, he appeared in state and federal courts; he also served as special counsel to the California Victims of Violent Crime Program. His first novel, Compelling Evidence, was published in 1992 and became a bestseller. He has gone on to write a number of other books, including The Trader of Secrets, Guardian of Lies, The List, The Judge, and Prime Witness, among others. He currently resides in the Pacific Northwest.

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Martini, Steve
Published by Jove Pubns (2003)
ISBN 10: 0515135259 ISBN 13: 9780515135251
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Martini, Steve
Published by Jove Pubns
ISBN 10: 0515135259 ISBN 13: 9780515135251
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