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Special Circumstances (Mike Daley, Book 1)

Siegel, Sheldon

4,219 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0553801414 / ISBN 13: 9780553801415
Published by Bantam, U.S.A., 2000
Condition: Fine Hardcover
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Author's first novel. Inscribed to "Felix" by the author. Highly praised legal thriller. Bookseller Inventory # 005912

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Special Circumstances (Mike Daley, Book 1)

Publisher: Bantam, U.S.A.

Publication Date: 2000

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition:Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: Fine

Signed: Inscribed by Author(s)

Edition: 1st Edition

About this title

Synopsis:

Special Circumstances (Mike Daley, Book 1)

Review:

With over a hundred mysteries and thrillers published each month, it's rare that a new book by an unknown author makes a splash, both with critics and with the public. John Grisham's The Firm was a cult hit among lawyers that exploded into New York Times bestsellerdom. Tom Clancy's The Hunt for Red October, first published by the Naval Institute Press, was discovered when Ronald Reagan labeled it a "perfect yarn." Sheldon Siegel's debut legal thriller, Special Circumstances is likely to take its place among these precious few.

The novel begins with the distinctive voice of Siegel's ex-priest hero: "After my five years as an underproductive partner in our white-collar criminal defense department, our executive committee asked me to leave. I was, in short, fired. On Monday I'll open the law offices of Michael J. Daley, criminal-defense attorney, in a subleased office in a walk-up building in the not-so-trendy part of San Francisco's South of Market area. Welcome to the modern practice of law...."

But on his final day of work, a senior partner turns up dead. A close colleague of Daley's is the most likely suspect, and Daley--in his new walk-up practice--takes the case. In a series of brilliantly executed twists and turns, he uncovers one layer of deception and intrigue after another to get to the root truth of the case. Meanwhile, Siegel--a San Francisco attorney himself--continues to pepper his first-person narrative with Daley's dead-on jabs at the world of courtroom warfare. Of the new San Francisco DA, for example, Daley comments: "As an attorney, he's careless, lazy and unimaginative. As a human being, he's greedy, condescending and an unapologetic philanderer. As a politician, however, he's the real deal."

While Special Circumstances is not a "perfect yarn," it is nearly so. As well-executed as most classic legal thrillers, it slips effortlessly into a distinctive narrative voice to capture Mike Daley's world and elevate the thriller story line to a deeper commentary on the state of the legal profession and the quest for true justice. Welcome to the big time, Sheldon Siegel. --Patrick O'Kelley

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