on 2 June 2005
I am new to William Lashner and the Victor Carl series, but after reading this novel I know that I will go back to check out the previous ones and I will keep checking for his future works. There are several aspects I enjoyed about this author's work, some of them related to the plot and others to the writing style.
For example, I liked reading a story told by a hero that is imperfect. He is not the tough guy that beats everyone up when needed to, or the super successful lawyer that always has all the answers and knows how to proceed. Victor Carl is an average man, who works as a lawyer, and whose fate will involve him with a mysterious character named Dr. Bob. Lashner starts the story when Victor is in a bar with Bob and when the latter goes to the restroom, Victor takes his glass and puts it in an evidence bag. This is an example of the kind of tools the author uses to pique our interest.
Victor then proceeds to tell us the story of how he got to that situation with Bob, the dentist. The events that are part of this narration are complex and as a result the novel possesses plenty of twists and turns. It all starts with Francois Dube, a Frenchman accused of killing his wife, and with the vast amount of evidence the district attorney has against him. Victor dislikes his client but needs the money, so he takes the case. Also, he loves fighting for the underdog, and this situation qualifies perfectly. When Victor experiences a toothache, and someone recommends Dr. Bob, the story gets really interesting.
In my experience, I have determined that when mystery novels have side plots they are more riveting. In this case, Victor is assigned a pro bono case involving a kid named Daniel Rose, and he has to make a recommendation on the adequacy of the kid living with his mother. This will lead to a meeting with an enigmatic old man that pushes him to dig to the core of the issue. This side plot works well with the rest of the story, helping to keep the pace up.
Lashner has clearly and successfully won me over. He has done this through his clever writing and his ability to create three-dimensional characters that make reading a pleasure. The fact that he knows how to use humor through Victor's comments is an added benefit that makes the book even easier to read and to enjoy. As I mentioned, I have not read the previous installments in the series, but I believe this book stands well on its own. So if you are considering trying out this author, my recommendation is to go ahead, I believe you will enjoy it.
on 27 June 2008
Lashner produces another great story for Victor Carl,his Philadelphia lawyer,who leads a hand-to-mouth existence in a seedy office,in a ramshackle building with no-hoper clients.A high strung ,top chef is in jail for mudering his wife.VC is asked by mysterious beauty to do his utmost to get the case re-opened whatever the expense.VC,highly motivated by the prospect of a cash-paying wealthy client at last,does dig deeply into the conduct of the original trial.But whenever one does dig truly deeply,you don't know when to stop,and before he knows it VC may well have dug himself all the way to Hell.Bob ,the dentist and his staff are heavily involved in the story ,and what a wonderful character BOB is-dangerous too.There is a child to be saved,in fact there are 3 as VC finds out later.Only one is the child of the chef,the other 2 are,well you're going to have to read the book to find out.And VC's legal partner seems to have fallen under the spell of the charismatic chef even though he is in jail and there is more than a trace of blood on his hands.Can VC save his partner too?There is a lot in this book,as in all Lashner's stories.
Another outing for lawyer Victor Carl, a clever, witty guy whose apparent self interest hide a heart of gold.
Here he and his partner Beth take on a review of a convicted murderer while Victor also has to contend with a child custody case and a spot of toothache. Once again Lashner writes very well and makes Victor an engaging and interesting character. Victor does not like this case or his client, but once he gets his teeth into something...
And, talking of teeth, don't read this if you need a dentist as Bob the dentist plays an interesting part in this story which blends a lot of themes including one of redemption and the idea of "pay it forward". But it moves at pace and if the conclusion is not quite what we expect, it is somewhat thought provoking.
Another good one from a talented writer.
on 25 June 2011
I have only recently come across William Lashner. His character, Victor Carl, is a welcome change. He is a comedic lawyer who serves his clients purely by chance, it seems, as he throws himself into unlikely situations. His witticms and asides are entertaining. I admit to being puzzled by the sequence of events but, for me, the combination of bland humour and perceptive insight into human behaviour is a plus. Very readable.
on 7 September 2009
This Was A Great Read, Light Hearted, Serious,Funny,Well Written. First Time I Have Read From This Author Will Definitly Read More.DAVE