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Formats
Paperback Book Details
  • 06/2017
  • 9781546493402 7145104
  • 320 pages
  • $11.75
The Judge's Brief

Adult; Mystery/Thriller; (Market)

The eighteen-year-old son of attorney Allen Pierman turns to an old family friend, a judge, for answers to questions about who his father was. The judge’s recollection begins in an open field, where Randy Grable, the young man’s uncle, was found dead on a tractor that had been set afire, shot in the head and chest. Pierman had only recently inherited the county prosecutor job from his deceased father, Carter, and he wants little to do with the case. Nevertheless, it is up to him and Sheriff Joe Calkins, Pierman's best friend in high school, to make an arrest. With the aid of the victim's sister, Kay, to whom Pierman is attracted, they discover that Grable had been leading a double life. At the same time, Pierman has a hard time shaking the feeling that Nate McQueen, a Vietnam veteran and cable repairman, is hiding a secret of his own. Several weeks into the investigation, a courthouse janitor is killed while Grable’s murderer rifles Pierman’s case files. After clashes over investigative methods and Pierman's commitment to resolving the case, Calkins abandons him—leaving Pierman to find and stop Holoce County’s most wanted criminal alone.
Reviews
Kirkus Reviews

When disaster strikes the quiet little town of Holoce County, a public defender from Chicago must face his own past in order to catch a killer in Gastineau’s debut novel.

Eighteen years after an infamous case claimed the life of attorney Allen Pierman, his teenage son seeks answers from an old family friend, a judge, as to who his father was. The judge’s recollection begins in an open field, where Randy Grable, the young man’s uncle, was found dead on his tractor, set on fire, with bullets in his head and chest. Pierman had only recently inherited his county prosecutor job from his deceased father, Carter, and he wanted little to do with the case. Nonetheless, it was up to him and Sheriff Joe Calkins to make an arrest. They discovered that Grable was secretly gay and had been leading a double life; then, pieces of the murderer’s disassembled rifle began turning up on telephone poles across the county. Meanwhile, Pierman had a hard time shaking the feeling that Nate McQueen, a Vietnam veteran and cable repairman, was hiding a secret of his own. Several weeks into the investigation, a courthouse janitor was killed, just as Grable’s murderer was caught rifling through Pierman’s case files. Then, Pierman’s partner abandoned him—leaving him to face Holoce’s most wanted criminal alone. Gastineau’s murder mystery is thrilling, and Holoce County and its inhabitants spring to life through vivid imagery (“He was short-haired and freshly shaved, so much so that one of the pimples he’d raked off his chin still oozed”). Complex characters drive the story with emotionally charged and revealing dialogue (“Boys, let’s get a dog and a chopper in here and stop fucking around,” says state cop Purcell as he expresses frustration with Calkins’ investigation). Gastineau never fails to keep readers on their toes, and the final pages will fly by as readers eagerly search for answers. Thriller fans and mystery junkies will particularly love this twisted adventure in a not-so-quiet town, although they may feel a bit shortchanged by its abrupt ending.

An exciting whodunit that will keep readers guessing until the very end.

News
09/02/2017
Gastineau among 20 writers at Quarry Festival of Books

I'll sign copies of The Judge's Brief and talk with readers at the Quarry Festival of Books on Saturday, September 2, 2017. The Festival will be held at Dunn Meadow on the Indiana University campus in Bloomington, Indiana, from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Twenty other Indiana authors of fiction and general interest titles also will be present to autograph books and meet readers with more than 100 individual books available for purchase. Special giveaways and discounts of up to 50% will be offered to all Festival attendees, and a kid’s coloring area will also be part of this year’s event.

Formats
Paperback Book Details
  • 06/2017
  • 9781546493402 7145104
  • 320 pages
  • $11.75

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