The Hearing Paperback – Feb 1 2002
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When the police find Cole Burgess crouched over Elaine Wager's body on a deserted San Francisco street, they don't have to look very far for means, motive, and the assumption of guilt. The heroin junkie is carrying the gun that killed the rising political star, he has her jewelry and wallet in his pockets, and he flees as fast as his smacked- out legs will take him--right into a fire hydrant. But homicide lieutenant Abe Glitsky isn't willing to leave anything to chance. Elaine was his daughter, though neither had ever acknowledged the relationship. Desperate to avenge his daughter's murder, the policeman (whose razor-sharp profile mirrors an even edgier personality) encourages his detectives to "sweat" the suspect for a confession.
The DA is equally eager to capitalize (pun intended) on the murder: bent on reversing her public image as being soft on crime, Sharron Pratt declares that her office will seek the death penalty. Enter Dismas Hardy, author John Lescroart's smooth-talking Irish lawyer, cajoled into defending Burgess. He doesn't like his client, but he doesn't trust the confession nor Pratt's sudden blood thirst. Joining investigative forces with Elaine's paralegal, Treya Ghent, and Glitsky himself suspended after news of the confession leaks out, Hardy will find himself on the trail of corruption and deceit in the most rarefied of legal circles.
The Hearing is a big, burly legal thriller, and its size is both vice and virtue. Lescroart handles his courtroom scenes with a deft touch, but his ex judicia narrative is often ponderous. He tends to introduce plot developments with sweeping statements, bolstering them with clumsy retrospection, and his characterization leaves something to be desired: "the very cute Amy Wu" has "large enough breasts so that people rarely noticed the bit of thickness at her waist"; and "Visser had a couple of character flaws that were going to negatively impact his aspirations on the force." These cavils aside, The Hearing will doubtlessly appeal to Grisham and Turow fans-- and to Lescroart's own considerable retinue. --Kelly Flynn --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
Another satisfying, character-driven legal thriller will be happily embraced by new and longtime fans of master plot-weaver Lescroart (The 13th Juror; etc.). Former San Francisco cop and current defense attorney Dismas Hardy's latest assignment pits him against his rival, D.A. Sharron Pratt, whose popularity in the polls is slipping. Although averse to murder cases, Hardy tries to help an acquaintance by defending heroin addict Cole Burgess, who is accused of murdering Assistant D.A. Elaine Wager, the popular daughter of a deceased female senator. What Hardy doesn't know (nor does anyone else) is that Wager's father is Hardy's best friend, Lt. Abe Glitsky of SFPD homicide. Abe overreacts by sweating Dismas's client into a coerced confession; under media pressure for her New Age approach to criminal justice, Pratt arms for re-election by calling for the death penalty, handling the grand jury hearing along with her chief assistant and sometime lover, Gabriel Torrey. Meanwhile, Dismas's mentor, brilliant defense attorney David Freeman, chances across evidence that may link a city official to Dash Logan, an ambulance-chasing lawyer known for his scams. Abe, suspended for leaking Cole's confession, begins to doubt Coles's guilt and decides to take on the D.A. in order to track down the real killer. Lescroart brilliantly sets scenes in the hearing phase that allow credible leeway for courtroom pyrotechnics later on. The richness and diversity of the large cast neither slows the pace nor confuses the narrative, as even minor characters take on memorable presence and depth. Readers will savor the mounting tension and the many twists and turns along the way to the surprise ending. (Apr. 23)Forecast: A vigorous, six-month marketing blitz, kicked off with the release of a teaser chapter in Lescroart's Nothing But the Truth in February, should help make his latest another bestseller.
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title. See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Well, the Dismas Hardy books are the exception to my rule. For example, The Hearing could arguably be called slightly too long. But to me, a thick book featuring Dismas Hardy (and/or the characters around him) is a delight.
Once in a while I have to go back and check just who exactly one of the characters is, but Lescroart, at least so far, has a firm hold on his plot and protagonists. Hardy and his wife and children, and their friends and co-workers, are so interesting. It would be incorrect to call Lescroart's books "cosy mysteries," a phrase I have heard used for some British novels. But the settings in the homes of the characters, their unique personal quirks, the offices where people work, not to mention the wonderful environs of San Francisco, make these books the kind you want to curl up with on a cold winter night (not to mention a warm summer day).
Is the book far fetched? Only slightly. A poem is supposed to be the concentration and distillation of many melding thoughts, concepts, ideas. A book is like that. All the things could happen, maybe not so many packed into a relatively short space and time frame, but the writer must be licensed to do this else the story could really run on forever.
I can't remember the first Lescroart book I ever read, but I think perhaps it was not a Dismas Hardy one. No matter, I was hooked. Unfortunately I did not make a note of the author's name and had to wait till I came across more books by him.Read more ›
The crux of a Lescroart Dismas Harding Series is, of course The Law; the way it should be but always isn't; but in the end, justice does prevail. He brings realism to a trial portrayal so lacking in other novels. He emphasis Dismas' frustration as a lawyer who is limited by courtroom procedure and yet gives Dismas the legal (and sometimes not so legal) tools to present his compelling evidence.
It also appears from reading this series that Mr. Lescroart has a respect for not only lawyers, but for the working staff in a law office such as the paralegals, clerks, etc. I like that in his novels.
Am I a fan of Lescroart? Of course and I can't wait to read The Oath.
Thank you Mr. Lescroart for a great series - don't ever stop giving me the pleasure of reading about my favorite characters.
Like another reviewer, I flinched at some factual things. "Dress out"? Another that caught my eye was when Cole recalls his friend, Steve, from his early years and Cole flashes back to when he last saw Steve - at a frat party at Notre Dame. Now I went to Notre Dame. There are no frats there, no greek system at all. Then Cole brought cocaine with him to the party and some girl indulged. At Notre Dame? Catholic Disneyland? Please! You get dirty looks if you smoke a cigarette there. A small nitpick but it clearly showed the author only paid attention to certain facts, not others.
It's a decent read but Lord, it's longer than it needs to be. I could hardly believe it when Lescroart desribed the preliminary hearing in such detail. If the ordinary way to tell a story is to say, "I called Shelly," Lescroart will tell it like this, "I picked up the telephone. I pressed out the number on the keypad with the tip of my index finger, on my right hand. I had the receiver to my ear. I heard the phone ring. It rang again. Then again. Finally, Shelly answered." Sometimes, it is borderline painful.
The problem is that Lescroart does a good enough job with characters that you still want to know what happened and so you brave the tedium. I don't think it's a "page turner" per se. It's interesting and decently written. I think most readers would enjoy it, I just had some nit picks.
Most recent customer reviews
Although the book is about 10 years old I just read it fo the first time. I always look for John Lescroart's books and am always happy to find one I have not read. Read morePublished on Feb. 9 2012 by Carol
This story, featuring a crotchety detective, Abe Glitsky, and other variously interesting characters, has a fairly good story:
the death of a rising star, in the D.A. Read more
I was very pleased to read "The Hearing" and found that I enjoyed it almost as much as his best book, "The Thirteenth Juror". Read morePublished on Jan. 1 2003
I picked this book up in a library wondering what it has to offer. It looked quite interesting and didn't disappoint me. Read morePublished on Aug. 26 2002 by MUSIC LOVER
I had never read any of Lescroart's works before "The Hearing". I picked it up in an Airport book store, and read it on a cross-country flight. I couldn't put it down. Read morePublished on Aug. 3 2002
As a rule, I usually enjoy kicking back and reading a Lescroart book. they are often interesting, and keep you wondering what will happen next. Read morePublished on July 31 2002 by Robert Knetsch
In the legal thriller/police procedural, Lescroart weaves an intriguing story with likable, believable, well-drawn characters. Read morePublished on May 5 2002 by Silver Springer
Remember the novel "Anatomy of a Murder"? The lawyer defends a man accused of murder who is acquitted, yet we find out at the end that the defendant was guilty of the crime. Read morePublished on May 5 2002 by Bucherwurm
interesting story about a man who doesn't get to meet his daughter before she dies. he does, however, enter into a may-december romance, enlist the aid of his good friend Dismas... Read morePublished on May 3 2002 by addyrphoto