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Defending Jacob [MP3 CD]

William Landay , Grover Gardner
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Jan. 31 2012
Andy Barber has been an assistant district attorney in suburban Massachusetts for over twenty years. He is respected in his community, tenacious in the courtroom, and happy at home. Then a shocking crime shatters their town, and Andy is blindsided by what happens next: His fourteen-year-old son is charged with the murder of a fellow student. Jacob insists that he's innocent, and Andy believes him. But soon Andy will face a trial of his own.
--This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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“Ingenious . . .  Nothing is predictable. All bets are off.”—Janet Maslin, The New York Times

“A legal thriller that’s comparable to classics such as Scott Turow’s Presumed Innocent . . . Tragic and shocking, Defending Jacob is sure to generate buzz.”—Associated Press

“Stunning . . . a novel that comes to you out of the blue and manages to keep you reading feverishly until the whole thing is completed.”—The Huffington Post

“Gripping . . . [Landay] keeps you turning the pages through the shocking gut-punch of an ending.”—Entertainment Weekly

“Gripping, emotional murder saga . . . The shocking ending will have readers pulling up their bedcovers to ward off the haunting chill.”—People

“The hype is justified. . . . Exceptionally serious, suspenseful, engrossing.”—The Washington Post

“Not since Scott Turow has a crime thriller—any thriller, though this too happens to be a literary legal thriller—shaken me by the throat like this. It’s a stunning, shocking, emotionally harrowing ride in which the reader is plunged into a riveting but terrible murder trial and the equally heartbreaking implosion of a loving family.”—Daily Mail

“Even with unexpected twists and turns, the two narratives interlock like the teeth of a zipper, building to a tough and unflinching finale. This novel has major motion picture written all over it.”—The Boston Globe

“[William] Landay does the seemingly impossible by coming up with a new wrinkle in the crowded subgenre of courtroom thrillers. . . . It’s inevitable that he’ll be compared to Scott Turow, but this novel succeeds on its own merits.”—Kirkus Reviews

--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

About the Author

William Landay is the author of The Strangler, a Los Angeles Times Favorite Crime Book of the Year, and Mission Flats, winner of the Creasey Memorial Dagger Award for Best First Crime Novel and a Barry Award nominee. A former district attorney who holds degrees from Yale and Boston College Law School, Landay lives in Boston, where he is at work on his next novel of suspense. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read Feb. 11 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Very good story, and not at all predictable.....keeps you guessing until the very end....and even then your surprised. Masterful writing, amazing characters.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Real page turner May 14 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
What a great read. Hated to put it down right to the last page. Can't wait to read his next thriller.
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5.0 out of 5 stars being a parent is tough love March 2 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Intelligent, heart-stopping, powerful, engaging.

So is your son a murderer or just a bit different?

The world has condemned him already.

What do you do? Nature or nurture - what shapes our ends?

This book takes you through the travels and travails of a scared family. If you love legal stories, enjoy detecting, beg for stories that are basically enthrall ing conversations, then this is THE book for you. Enjoy!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Touching Feb. 4 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
This story is plain brilliant, with deep and moving characters, lofty ideas and an insight that gets my full respect.The descriptions are vivid, the setting wide and varied, and William Landlay has a good sense of things and knowledge. The connections made between Jacob and Andy Barber, his father, are well observed. The twists and interconnections in the story also reminds me of Triple Agent Double Cross.The story gripped me all the way to the end, made explosive by the final twist in the story.
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2.0 out of 5 stars At a Loss Jan. 9 2014
By Jeffrey Swystun TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Kindle Edition
It is one of those times where I am completely shocked by a novel's reviews and success. This book was a contrived and reductive mess. The pacing and structure were plotted like a made-for-tv-movie. It aspires to be a suspenseful outing combining the styles of Turow and Picoult but falls far short. To be fair, I did enjoy a few nuggets including Landay's commentary on teenagers and parenting including these bon mots:

“The interior of a teenager’s mind is an endless war between Stupid and Clever.”

“At some point as adults we cease to be our parents' children and we become our children's parents instead.”

"I don't have a parenting style. I'm just making it up as I go."

He also makes a few good runs at commercialism including a solid jab at the "elaborate pretense" that is Whole Foods pretending it "was something other than a luxury store." Landay obviously loves storytelling as he injects references to it and building narratives throughout the book, “We are pattern-seeking, storytelling animals, and have been since we began drawing on cave walls.”

It is just a shame that this is not a well-told tale. The family at the story's centre is never fleshed out and they do not endear or prompt any connection. Jacob could have been an incredible character. Instead he was impenetrable, conveniently masked behind a blanket diagnosis of narcissism. The wife was little more than a caricature and the father qualified for stupid villain-status.

Unlike the wildly popular but equally improbable, Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn, this thriller never gelled or compelled. It was frustrating right up to and including the abrupt ending which I am not sure was a literary device or an expression of the author’s own disappointment with the story. I remain bewildered at the praise it has received.
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5.0 out of 5 stars One family's tragedy Oct. 3 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
While reading this book I kept thinking of so many families who experience a tragedy exactly like this How many times have I read about a son like this in the same situaton and the words : He was such a nice and quied child. This is a book difficult to put down.
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5.0 out of 5 stars An absorbing read June 11 2013
By Burchy
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I started this thinking I would read a few chapters a day and then found myself barreling through it. It's the type of book which sneaks up on you. It is not for faint of heart, though.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Disturbing June 8 2013
By Joan
Format:Kindle Edition
A quick read. Engaging and well written. Very disturbing to explore what makes us into the adults we become. Nature vs nurture on steroids.
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