Monday, November 9, 2015

Review: Corrupted

Summary: Bennie Rosato the founder of the Rosato & DiNunzio law firm hides her big heart beneath her tough-as-nails exterior and she doesn't like to fail. Now, a case from her past shows her how differently things might have turned out. Thirteen years ago, Bennie Rosato took on Jason Lefkavick, a twelve-year-old boy who was sent to a juvenile detention center after fighting a class bully. Bennie couldn't free Jason, and to this day it's the case that haunts her. Jason has grown up in and out of juvenile prison, and his adulthood hasn't been any easier. Bennie no longer represents those accused of murder, but when Jason is indicted for killing the same bully he fought with as a kid, she sees no choice but to represent him. She doesn't know whether or not to believe his claims of innocence, but she knows she owes him for past failures-of the law, of the juvenile justice system, and of herself. Forced to relive the darkest period of her life, Bennie will do everything in her power to get the truth, and justice. -- St. Martin's Press

I have been reading pretty regularly these past few weeks, but all I want to read are mysteries and thrillers. That isn't really a problem because so many great mystery authors are releasing new books. The latest novel that really captured my interest was CORRUPTED by Lisa Scottoline. This is another book in her Rosato and DiNunzio series, and I thought it was excellent!

Bennie Rosato is called to defend Jason Lefkavick after he is accused of murdering his childhood rival. Bennie can't help but take the case since she has been living with guilt for the past thirteen years for "failing" Jason. Twelve-year-old Jason was sent to a juvenile detention facility after fighting a class bully, and his father hired Bennie to help free Jason. Bennie wasn't able to help Jason, and he ultimately ended up living a troubled life -- going in and out of juvie.

Even though Bennie doesn't handle murder cases, she takes on Jason's case. Despite being found covered in blood and holding a knife, Jason swears that he is innocent. Bennie isn't quite sure what to think about Jason -- the evidence is convincing; however, she feels as if she owes him for not being able to save him thirteen years ago.

As Bennie begins investigating Jason's case, many feelings from her past are brought back to the forefront. She is forced to reflect back on how she failed Jason and his father, how the system failed Jason, and even some personal losses of her own. Bennie is willing to do whatever it takes to save Jason this time around... even if that means going against the wishes of her client!

I was highly entertained by CORRUPTED. I am a big fan of Ms. Scottoline's books and this one was no exception. I enjoy the character of Bennie with her gruff exterior and big heart, and I appreciated how this novel explored so much of her past while also showing her amazing courtroom skills. I was definitely kept guessing about Jason's innocence and what possibly could have happened at the murder scene. Overall, I think fans of mysteries and courtroom thrillers will love this book!

One of my absolute favorite things about CORRUPTED was Bennie. I just love this character! She is a strong and smart woman who also provides a few laughs for the reader. In this novel, her complexity really showed through. The author used flashbacks to explain what happened between Bennie and Jason thirteen years ago, and this allowed for some very interesting insight into Bennie's past. Bennie not only had to deal with the guilt from disappointing Jason, but she also had cope with the losses associated with the end of a personal relationship.

Another great part of CORRUPTED were the courtroom scenes. I love courtroom thrillers and actually haven't read one for quite awhile! Bennie is just a master lawyer and I loved her interrogations and cross examinations. Needless to say, Ms. Scottoline is a master of writing these scenes too. I thought these trial scenes in CORRUPTED were especially realistic and tight!

Lisa Scottoline doesn't disappoint in her latest novel CORRUPTED. It's a well-written and fast-paced story that's full of surprises. Highly recommended!

Thanks to the publisher for providing a review copy of this novel.

Mystery Mondays is a regular feature where I review all types of mystery books -- traditional mysteries, suspense/thrillers, and even cozies! Please feel free to share your thoughts on any recent mystery books that you've read.


bermudaonion said...

How have I missed this series? This book sounds like a page turner!

(Diane) bookchickdi said...

This sounds like a good one.