Heart of a killer

David Rosenfelt

Book - 2012

"Jamie Wagner is a young lawyer who is happy to be flying under the radar at a large firm doing background research for the partners. It's not that he isn't smart. He is. It's just that hard work, the whole legal world, isn't really his thing. Underachiever? Yes. Content? At least until the firm puts him on a case that turns his whole world upside down. Sheryl Harrison has served four years of a thirty-year murder sentence for killing her husband who she claims abused he...r and her daughter Karen. The case is settled. There shouldn't be anything for Jamie to do--except Karen is sick. She has a congenital heart defect and will die without a transplant, and her rare blood type makes the chance of finding a matching donor remote. Sheryl wants to be that donor, and Jamie is in way over his head. Suicide, no matter the motive, is illegal, and Sheryl is put on suicide watch. Jamie's only shot at helping Sheryl and saving Karen is to reopen the murder case, prove Sheryl's innocence, and get her freed so that she can pursue her plan on her own. A gripping story of an ordinary man faced with an impossible situation, David Rosenfelt's latest is his most powerful thriller yet"--

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Subjects
Genres
Suspense fiction
Mystery fiction
Published
New York : Minotaur Books 2012.
Edition
1st ed
Language
English
Physical Description
298 p. ; 25 cm
ISBN
9780312598372
0312598378
Main Author
David Rosenfelt (-)
Review by Booklist Reviews

Here's what seems to be a winning combination: a popular and accomplished novelist, a likable hero, and two themes of overwhelming importance. The result? Readers will likely turn the last page and wonder what went wrong. The main plot involves assisted suicide. A woman jailed for murder wants to be killed and have her heart given to her dying daughter. Officialdom resists, so the case must go to court. Next, computers. They control everything, so someone controlling them can crash an airplane, burn a car, and melt down a nuclear-power plant. All these things—and more—happen here. The plots converge midbook, when Jamie Wagner, the lawyer hired by the prisoner who wants to die, finds himself battling a crazed computer maven. The wisecracking Wagner would be fine in a different novel, but here—in a book dealing with such portentous matters—he's the wrong man. When things grow ominous, he jokes about his hatred of work and lack of ambition, scuttling the tone and keeping the reader distant from the plot. A good character and a gripping story, but they simply don't mix. Stick with Rosenfelt, though; he can write, despite this misstep. Copyright 2012 Booklist Reviews.

Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

Edgar-finalist Rosenfelt's fine stand-alone begins as a legal thriller that twists into a murder mystery before becoming a full-blown suspense chiller. The life of Karen Harrison, a 14-year-old girl with a congenital heart defect, can only be saved by a heart transplant from a matching donor. Karen's mom, Sheryl, who shares Karen's rare blood type, wishes to donate her heart. Two complications stand in Sheryl's way. First, she must die to enable the transplant. Second, in order to commit suicide, she must get out of prison, where she's serving 15 years to life for her abusive husband's murder six years earlier. That's where Sheryl's underachieving lawyer, Jamie Wagner, comes in. Jamie hopes to file a lawsuit against the state of New Jersey on her behalf, but his plans change when he learns Sheryl may not be guilty. Rosenfelt (On Borrowed Time) employs his usual wry wit to drive the well-paced plot. Author tour. Agent: Robin Rue at Writers House. (Feb.) [Page ]. Copyright 2011 PWxyz LLC

Review by Publisher Summary 1

"Jamie Wagner is a young lawyer who is happy to be flying under the radar at a large firm doing background research for the partners. It's not that he isn't smart. He is. It's just that hard work, the whole legal world, isn't really his thing. Underachiever? Yes. Content? At least until the firm puts him on a case that turns his whole world upside down. Sheryl Harrison has served four years of a thirty-year murder sentence for killing her husband who she claims abused her and her daughter Karen. The caseis settled. There shouldn't be anything for Jamie to do--except Karen is sick. She has a congenital heart defect and will die without a transplant, and her rare blood type makes the chance of finding a matching donor remote. Sheryl wants to be that donor, and Jamie is in way over his head. Suicide, no matter the motive, is illegal, and Sheryl is put on suicide watch. Jamie's only shot at helping Sheryl and saving Karen is to reopen the murder case, prove Sheryl's innocence, and get her freed so that she can pursue her plan on her own. A gripping story of an ordinary man faced with an impossible situation, David Rosenfelt's latest is his most powerful thriller yet"--

Review by Publisher Summary 2

Underachieving lawyer Jamie Wagner faces a morally and legally wrenching case when his client, a woman wrongly convicted for murdering her husband, begs him to help her get freed so that she can commit suicide and donate her heart to her terminally ill daughter.

Review by Publisher Summary 3

Underachieving lawyer Jamie Wagner faces a morally and legally wrenching case when his client, a woman wrongly convicted for murdering her husband, begs him to help her get freed so that she can commit suicide and donate her heart to her terminally ill daughter. By the Edgar- and Shamus Award-nominated author of the Andy Carpenter series.

Review by Publisher Summary 4

Jamie Wagner is a young lawyer who is happy to be flying under the radar at a large firm. It’s not that he isn’t smart. He is. It’s just that hard work, not to mention the whole legal thing, isn’t exactly his passion. Underachiever? A little. Content? Right up until the firm puts him on a case that turns his whole world upside down.Sheryl Harrison has served four years of a thirty-year murder sentence for killing her husband, who she claims was abusive. The case is settled---there shouldn’t be anything for Jamie to do---except Sheryl’s fourteen-year-old daughter, Karen, is sick. She has a congenital heart defect and will die without a transplant. Her blood type is rare, making their chances of finding a matching donor remote at best. Sheryl wants to be that donor for her daughter, and Jamie is in way over his head. Suicide, no matter the motive, is illegal. So with Sheryl on suicide watch, Jamie’s only shot at helping her and saving Karen is to reopen the murder case, prove Sheryl’s innocence, and get her freed so that she can pursue her plan on her own.Heart of a Killer---a gripping story of an ordinary man faced with an impossible situation---is the most powerful and shocking thriller yet from David Rosenfelt, a true master of the genre.