I’m thrilled to be taking part in the second tour of the day with Rachel’s Random Resources, for Justice Gone, by N Lombardi Jr.
Title: Justice Gone
Author: N. Lombardi Jr.
Length: 336 pages
A beaten homeless vet. Three cops gunned down. A multistate manhunt. The trial of the decade.
A new kind of legal thriller
When a homeless war veteran is beaten to death by the police, stormy protests ensue, engulfing a small New Jersey town. Soon after, three cops are gunned down.
A multi-state manhunt is underway for a cop killer on the loose. And Dr Tessa Thorpe, a veteran’s counselor, is caught up in the chase.
Donald Darfield, an African-American Iraqi war vet, war-time buddy of the beaten man, and one of Tessa’s patients, is holed up in a mountain cabin. Tessa, acting on instinct, sets off to find him, but the swarm of law enforcement officers gets there first, leading to Darfield’s dramatic capture.
Now, the only people separating him from the lethal needle of state justice are Tessa and ageing blind lawyer, Nathaniel Bodine. Can they untangle the web tightening around Darfield in time, when the press and the justice system are baying for revenge?
I was sort of expecting a John Grisham style of novel, and while there were some similarities, I was also pleasantly surprised by the rawness of Justice Gone.
As a South African, I’m only familiar with the American justice system from what I’ve seen on the media, and this novel takes a deeper look into the lives of people who are affected by horrors that many of us can’t even begin to imagine.
The book was engrossing from beginning to end, with just enough humour and lighthearted moments to prevent it being too heavy.
I thoroughly enjoyed the inside look at the courtroom, the way witnesses are prepared for trials, and the way they ultimately play out. Nathaniel Bodine and Tessa Thorpe were delightful characters, full of depth and warmth that ran true throughout.
If you’re looking for a courtroom drama that takes a long, hard look at the realities of social injustice, I’d recommend Justice Gone.
Lombardi Jr, the N for Nicholas, has spent over half his life in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East, working as a groundwater geologist. Nick can speak five languages: Swahili, Thai, Lao, Chinese, and Khmer (Cambodian).
In 1997, while visiting Lao People’s Democratic Republic, he witnessed the remnants of a secret war that had been waged for nine years, among which were children wounded from leftover cluster bombs. Driven by what he saw, he worked on The Plain of Jars for the next eight years.
Nick maintains a website with content that spans most aspects of the novel: The Secret War, Laotian culture, Buddhism etc. http://plainofjars.net
His second novel, Journey Towards a Falling Sun, is set in the wild frontier of northern Kenya.
His latest novel, Justice Gone was inspired by the fatal beating of a homeless man by police.
Nick now lives in Phnom Penh, Cambodia
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