A captivating and intimate look at injustices in the judicial system.



From the Help Innocent Prisoners Project series , Vol. 6

A dedicated lawyer works to exonerate an innocent woman on death row for the murder of her three children in a legal thriller by the author of The Good Twin (2018).

In the late 1990s, Becky Whitlaw was a young working-class mother in Glen Brook, Texas, when her husband, Grady, was killed in an auto accident. Nine months later, a 23-year-old widow with two toddlers and a new baby, Becky feels old and exhausted, and her life seems out of control. She even wonders sometimes if she wouldn’t be better off if her children had never been born. When her house is consumed by flames with her children inside as she sobs on the porch, “It’s my fault,” it doesn’t take long for investigators to conclude that she set the fire herself. In spite of her denials, she is charged and brought to trial and, after only two days of testimony, convicted of murder and sentenced to death. Years later, Dani Trumball, an attorney for the Help Innocent Prisoners Project, learns of Becky’s case and agrees to try to get her a new trial, in hopes that new evidence will prove her innocent of starting the fire that caused her children’s deaths. While juggling her own family challenges, including adjusting to a West Coast life after a cross-country move with her husband and two children, Dani works tirelessly to unearth old leads and witnesses, all the while knowing that even her best efforts might not be enough. A veteran author of novels about legal injustices, Green is a masterful storyteller, and her narrative fascinates from the first page to the last as she describes the uphill battle faced by those who try to prove the innocence of convicted felons. In addition to providing educational and electrifying details of Dani’s investigation and court battles, Green gives empathetic attention to the details of the attorney’s personal life, drawing parallels between Dani and Becky as wives and mothers and creating a tale that combines courtroom and family drama.

A captivating and intimate look at injustices in the judicial system.

Pub Date: April 28, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-9881980-4-3

Page Count: 296

Publisher: Yankee Clipper Press

Review Posted Online: March 16, 2020

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This is fast-paced, nonstop fun. Cussler fans will gobble it up.


Rumors of lost Egyptian treasure spark high adventure in this 17th in the NUMA series featuring oceanographer Kurt Austin and his crew (Sea of Greed, 2018, etc.).

Over 3,000 years ago, grave robbers sail away with loot from a pharaoh’s tomb. In 1927, Jake Melbourne and his plane disappear in his attempt at a trans-Atlantic flight. In the present day, arms merchants known as the Bloodstone Group have taken to stealing antiquities. They are looking for a “treasure both vast and glorious” that hieroglyphics say was shipped down the Nile and out of Egypt, perhaps even west across the Atlantic. (Holy scurvy! That must’ve been a lot of hard rowing!) The criminals are known to MI5 as “very dangerous people" and "merchants selling death.” Perfectly willing to kill everyone in their way, they are aided by mechanical crows and Fydor and Xandra, nasty sibling assassins jointly called the Toymaker. Such are the foes faced by Austin and his team from the National Underwater and Marine Agency. Of course, Austin has no interest in profit; he will gladly leave the ancient riches wherever they are. Action arrives early and often, and the failed pre-Lindbergh flight fits in neatly. Cussler and Brown concoct a nifty plot with disparate, sometimes over-the-top twists that will make even hardcore adventure fans say “Wow!” Expect claustrophobic gunfights, aerial combat, a life-threatening flood, messages from the dead, coffins of gold—and a vintage classic car, because why not? “We’re going to steal the greatest deposit of Egyptian treasure the world has ever known,” brags the evil mastermind. But he’ll have to climb over the series hero’s dead body first, which—no plot spoiler here—ain’t gonna happen.

This is fast-paced, nonstop fun. Cussler fans will gobble it up.

Pub Date: March 10, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-593-08308-6

Page Count: 432

Publisher: Putnam

Review Posted Online: Jan. 13, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2020

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Amateurish, with a twist savvy readers will see coming from a mile away.


A woman accused of shooting her husband six times in the face refuses to speak.

"Alicia Berenson was thirty-three years old when she killed her husband. They had been married for seven years. They were both artists—Alicia was a painter, and Gabriel was a well-known fashion photographer." Michaelides' debut is narrated in the voice of psychotherapist Theo Faber, who applies for a job at the institution where Alicia is incarcerated because he's fascinated with her case and believes he will be able to get her to talk. The narration of the increasingly unrealistic events that follow is interwoven with excerpts from Alicia's diary. Ah, yes, the old interwoven diary trick. When you read Alicia's diary you'll conclude the woman could well have been a novelist instead of a painter because it contains page after page of detailed dialogue, scenes, and conversations quite unlike those in any journal you've ever seen. " 'What's the matter?' 'I can't talk about it on the phone, I need to see you.' 'It's just—I'm not sure I can make it up to Cambridge at the minute.' 'I'll come to you. This afternoon. Okay?' Something in Paul's voice made me agree without thinking about it. He sounded desperate. 'Okay. Are you sure you can't tell me about it now?' 'I'll see you later.' Paul hung up." Wouldn't all this appear in a diary as "Paul wouldn't tell me what was wrong"? An even more improbable entry is the one that pins the tail on the killer. While much of the book is clumsy, contrived, and silly, it is while reading passages of the diary that one may actually find oneself laughing out loud.

Amateurish, with a twist savvy readers will see coming from a mile away.

Pub Date: Feb. 5, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-250-30169-7

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Celadon Books

Review Posted Online: Nov. 4, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 15, 2018

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