Trial Junkies 2: Negligence by Robert Gregory Browne
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Negligence is the second book in Robert Gregory Browne’s Trial Junkies series.
The book starts off with this kid, Jamal, who happens to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, who has been arrested for murdering a classmate, Kelly. Matt and Monica, members of the trial junkies and friends of Ethan “Hutch” Hutchinson, are sitting in on his arraignment. Matt has been recently laid of from his job at the Post as a reporter and is now trying his hand at online reporting for The Chicago Beat, a joint venture with Monica. After an altercation in the court room that sends Jamal to the hospital, Matt, Monica, & Hutch (who has arrived late to the courthouse), decide to see if they can get in to talk to Jamal. Matt uses Hutch’s previous famous actor status as a ploy to get into the hospital & is able to sneak in and talk to Jamal, after which he is convinced there is something more going on then a clear cut case of murder.
Matt starts investigating Jamal’s story of being set up and figuring out that somehow the police are involved. This leads him to the prestigious Eccelston Academy, which was argued as Chicago’s finest preparatory school, where he finds things aren’t exactly as they seem. After an attack on Matt leaves him the hospital, Hutch decides to continue Matt’s investigation. From here, the pace picks up and just when you think you know what’s going to happen next, you find out you’re wrong.
I, personally, really enjoyed this book a little more then the first TRIAL JUNKIES. I feel the characters had more substance and I liked how Robert gave another character, Matt, a larger role in the story. Hutch still is a prominent character in this book but I like the idea of giving each member of the trial junkies group a chance to shine, so to speak. Since Robert did introduce us to all the trial junkies, it’s nice to see their development instead of just being there for background. The pace of the book is just right to keep you wondering what’s going to happen next. I would definitely recommend this book and look forward to more trial junkie adventures.
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Trial Junkies by Robert Gregory Browne
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
What draws a person to pick up a particular book? Is it an eye catching or intriguing cover? Is it a famous author’s name that everyone knows? Or is it the opening line or chapter of a book? An unusual cover will usually cause me to stop & pick a book up or perhaps the brief synopsis of the story might cause me to stop & ponder if it’s something I want to read. But truth be told, the first few lines of a book will “make it or break it” for me. If I can’t be hooked from the beginning, I know I usually won’t make it past the first couple of chapters.
I can honestly say when I read the first couple paragraphs of TRIAL JUNKIES, my interest was piqued.
“They found her body in Dearborn Park. She had been left to die in a vacant lot on Clark Street, lying in a pool of her own blood, multiple stab wounds to her chest and abdomen, her face slashed, her throat slit ear to ear.”
How could you not be just a little bit curious after that opening paragraph?
The main character, Hutch, is a washed up actor who discovers his college girlfriend has been murdered. He returns home to Chicago after a 10 year absence for her funeral & reunites with his old college friends. While there, the police finally arrest a suspect, who just happens to be one of Hutch’s friends. And this is where things get interesting. As facts are introduced & evidence revealed, it looks like it’s a slam dunk for the prosecution. Or is it?
I read this book in two days, although I would have finished it in one day if I had had the time. I was totally captured by the story & just had to see what happened. Mr. Browne has woven just enough mystery & intrigue to tease you into saying “Just one more page. Just one more chapter.”. And then there was the ending. An ending that I certainly did NOT see coming.
I cannot wait to see where Mr. Browne takes us in the next installment of TRIAL JUNKIES. If you haven’t read any of Mr. Browne’s books, you should try this one. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed. I certainly wasn’t!
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