The law according to attorney Mickey Haller is not the same as it is to other defense lawyers. Sometimes in order for the outcome to come out your way you might have to create the ending using underhanded or creative methods.
The story opens as he is defending someone who stole cars by having someone rear-end them and then not only steal the car but their property too. When the one witness he thought would falter due to her age and thinking she was not that astute and would freeze from nerves holds steadfast, he puts his plan into motion. The defendant played his role and he played his as the judge has a decision to make.
Knowing the jury heard all of the comments made by all parties and saw the defendant attack his lawyer; he had no choice but to declare a mistrial. Mission accomplished and time to move on to the next as he gets back in his office or Lincoln Town Car where he holds court and finds himself defending Andre La Cosse, an internet web designer whose primary job is to manage and create websites for call girls. Andre is accused of murder and wants Mickey to defend him. The murder victim when Mickey looks into the case more closely is a former client named Gloria Dayton who Mickey thought had saved and helped take a straighter line.
But, not everything is what it seemed and he would later learn that where he thought she went with the 25 thousand dollars he gave her for a new start was not exactly where he thought. An old Christmas card would trigger memories and alert him to the fact that her destination was not Hawaii but somewhere else. Added the author reminds readers of his lack of relationship with his teenage daughter and his ability to switch sides in the political arena when it suits him. When a close friend of his daughter is killed and he feels responsible for getting the client off that killed two people, his first wife and daughter divorce him in more ways than one.
The victim was an ex-client and the payment he would receive would be in gold. Imagine receiving a 52 thousand dollar bar of gold as payment to take this case and more to follow. As his team investigates and gathers the facts several videos come into play and the movements of the deceased can be seen. Just who was the person that hired her and why did she say to Andre that he never showed up when he demanded his share of the payment for her services? When the police questioned him why did he admit to being in her apartment and telling him what had transpired?
Other elements come into play as his team finds out more about Gloria/Giselle and her dealings. Author Michael Connolly takes readers inside the courtroom during pretrial hearings, preliminaries and explains the court system in detail allowing readers to understand that not everything is handled on the up and up and that defendants need to really understand their rights before choosing a lawyer and talking to the police. Hearing the voice of the Detective who questioned Andre and watching the video you wonder whether the statements were coerced improper procedures were followed and if his client was wrongly accused. Added in we meet several other witnesses, watch closely as he attends the soccer practice of his daughter, and wonders whether they will ever reconnect.
When Mickey begins to learn more about his client he comes up against another attorney, an investigator for the DA’s office and a cartel thug behind bars who seems to be controlling things from prison. Added in a disbarred lawyer wants a piece of Mickey as the case gets intense when more players are added. A call girl named Kendall Roberts and another named Trixie seem to have information about Gloria that might help Hector Moya get a get out of jail free card from prison. Supposedly framed and a weapon found in his possession allowed the courts to sentence him to life in prison.
With a corrupt attorney flagging down witnesses and even Mickey, things start to come into place but someone is tailing him but who and why? As Trina unravels her story for a huge price Mickey learns more about the corrupt DEA agent and how he and others get their information. With the help of Lorna his ex-wife, Cisco her husband and investigator, his eager to join the team driver, Earl and several others he just might pull this off and find out who killed Gloria before his client is sentenced. Julie Aronson aka Bullocks joins the team as his new smart legal associate vying for more criminal work. So, will the Gods of Guilt, shine their light on him and declare his client not guilty or will they as others continue to watch and judge our moves all the time. A retired Cop now working for the DA has his own agenda and each time he enters the picture you can feel the heat rise around you and the red flags increase.
Events and evidence unfolds as Mickey gets closer to the truth and uncovers the secrets that some would rather stay hidden. A corrupt DEA agent, a disbarred lawyer, a cartel drug lord and several other unsavory characters intertwine as he enters the prison system, confronts one man and hopefully will be able to tie the murder of Gloria Dayton to another. Hector Moya and Andre LaCosse: their lives depend on just what Mickey can prove in court when it’s his turn to shine. Finding some type of connection with the jury and making eye contact with one in particular the trial starts but not before a cold ally and friend is killed. Who is following him? Who drove the truck that struck his limo and who is manipulating the events that happened before and after Gloria was killed? What was she going to testify? Who wanted her silenced? But, added in we learn more about his estranged relationship with his daughter, why she refuses to have anything to do with him and the fact that she and his ex-wife will be moving farther away.
Mickey Haller will do anything to defend a client especially one that is innocent. But when corruption reigns in the police department, DEA agents blackmail investigators and evidence is planted you never know what the outcome might be. A trial to clear his client will prove anything but ordinary as the witnesses appear, the evidence is presented and the twists and surprises that occur are the work of not only Mickey Haller but author Michael Connelly. Gloria Dayton was murdered. Someone followed her out of a hotel and set up the meet but failed to show up. Subpoenaed to appear in a civil case Gloria Dayton was served but never made that appearance. Hector Moya the man she was to testify against claimed he was framed but did he order her killed? Witnesses that changed their testimony, some too scared to appear and one lawyer who would not give up at any cost.
But, when things get too tense and reminders of what happened to someone close to him comes to light the team seems to be frayed and only one man can make them come together. Legal Siegel is my favorite character in this novel as he sees things the way Mickey should and refuses to allow him to take the easy road and explains in a trial: “ there are no maybes and mightbes in a trial: You gotta be sure.” An ending that will turn things in a direction you won’t expect. A witness that admits more than he even expected and one man whose life hangs in the balance. What happens is quite unexpected and the judge’s dilemma at the end will teach readers that trials can result in many outcomes, the author’s research into the law and court preceding extensive and The Gods Of Guilt: are always watching over Mickey Haller judging him every day as he pleads his case them.
Characters that are well defined and courtroom scenes quite graphic, vividly describing the proceedings as the main character describes and explains to the reader his method of handling witnesses, the cases and what we can and might expect from others. The Gods of Guilt: Who are yours?