Despite some of the criticism of this novel, I found "Final Appeal" an altogether enjoyable read. It's told in the first person by Grace Rossi, a single mother working in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, as a newly-appointed assistant to the hot chief judge, Armen Gregorian. Just hours after their one-night stand, Armen allegedly commits suicide, but Grace is reluctant to accept this, despite their relationship being just a superficial roll in the hay--or office, in this case. Instead, she spends the duration of the book tracking down his killer, with some help from Shake and Bake (one of my favorite characters), an FBI agent leading a double life as an eccentric raincoat/bonnet-wearing derelict (thus his nickname). As a mystery, "Final Appeal" wasn't very suspenseful (no major life-and-death scares until around the climax), but it was a fast, easy read, which reminded me of some of James Patterson's work. The dialogue was realistic, though the profanity made the characters sound like they were in a high school locker room rather than a courtroom. Still, this was a nice, fluffy legal thriller full of dry wit and humor. I look forward to reading more by Scottoline.