9 Scorpions, a novel by Paul Levine
PRICE : IDR 90.000,- (NEW, Hardcover)
From Publishers Weekly
Levine, forsaking hero-attorney Jake Lassiter, who has anchored several of his legal thrillers (Flesh & Bones, 1997, etc.), seems hopelessly at sea in this watery melodrama about an attempt to rig a Supreme Court decision. It won’t take readers long to see that Levine is far from shore. His heroine, Lisa Fremont, is a T.S. Eliot-quoting stripper-turned-hot shot young lawyer. His hero, Sam Truitt, a cross between “Harrison Ford and Jeff Bridges,” is a charismatic Harvard prof-turned-Supreme Court justice. And his principal villain, an enforcer in the pay of Japanese gangsters, is nicknamed “Shank” for his weapon of choice. The setup is more original. Lisa, under moral pressure from airline tycoon Max Wanaker, who saved her from the streets, and under physical pressure from Shank, who’s yanked off her earring to show that he means business, aims to get hired as Truitt’s clerk. Her goal is to persuade Truitt to cast his deciding vote in favor of Wanaker’s airline in a liability case that can not only ruin the tycoon but which, if Truitt votes against Wanaker, will cost both Wanaker and Lisa their lives at Shank’s cruel hands. Readers will predict from far away a key murder, and they won’t be any more surprised by the stagy climax, which finds Lisa calling upon the spirit of an old lover (“Tony! Help me. Help me now”). The novel skims along well despite workaday writing and offers Sam’s burgling of the Chief Justice’s office and a dinner hosted by a Yakuza boss as colorful highlights. The title quotes Oliver Wendell Holmes’s statement on the makeup of the Supreme Court, but it’s the reader who’s ultimately stung by this humdrum tale.
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