Robert Whitlow, a lawyer turned author, writes contemporary Christian novels that have earned him a Christy award and the nickname "the Christian John Grisham." Two of his novels have been made into feature films.
Young Tom Crane considers himself such a success that he anticipates his summons to his superior's office will finally bring the next step in the corporate legal ladder - a partnership. What he gets instead is a pink slip - with apologies and great references. Of course, loss of such a prestigious job will have ramifications throughout his life, as his society girlfriend will prove. Tom temporarily escapes the pressure of starting over as he makes a trip back to Bethel , GA, to close out his father's small legal firm and make sense of his dad's financial difficulties. Just weeks earlier his father and another man drowned in a boating accident on the local fishing pond, but as Tom sorts through financial and legal records, talks to local people, and visits the pond, it seems that mystery surrounds that afternoon on the pond. Was the relationship between the two men more than a sporting friendship and had Addington drawn his father into illegal activity?
Tom, who has been away from Bethel for years, definitely believes he has left behind the religion of his great uncle preacher and his father, but something happens as he sits at the water's edge. Then Addington's daughter Rose enters his life and mysteries multiply. This is a fast paced, suspenseful story with multiple twists, but with an underlying plot of Tom's transformation. When all is sorted out at the end of the book, all is not really sorted out. A few questions of motives and actions are still left gray and perhaps that goes with the comment made by Uncle Elias that good people can deceive themselves into ignoring a dark corner of their soul and the actions that spring from that corner.
Classify this as a Southern legal suspense novel with just a hint of romance.
I received an electronic galley of this book from NetGalley; this review reflects my personal opinions.
Each new Whitlow book is different. This one about a young lawyer returning home to close his deceased father's estate was gripping. The twists and turns were unexpected. Can't wait for the next book Robert Whitlow will write!
Once again, Robert Whitlow delivers a powerful story with characters that you can relate to and enjoy getting to know. Tom seems to be your stereotypical lawyer. Looking for the big partnership, the trophy girlfriend and all the power. What he gets is unemployed and his girlfriend moving on taking his cat with her.
Tom returns home to close his father's law practice and finds a huge mess, with his father owing large sum to the IRS. Adding to his anguish is the circumstances of his father's death and that of his friend, Harold Addington. As Tom and Addington's daugther, Rose, attempt to find the truth they soon realized things are not what they appear.
The thing I like about Whitlow's stories is the line of redemption that is there. Tom ends the story a very different (and better) person than he was at the beginning. Although, I've been a Christian for years, I often see myself in Whitlow's characters. Tom is no exception. As Christians, whether new or seasoned, we often make decisions based on circumstances and appearances rather than turning to God for guidance.
I give this book 4.5 out of 5 stars. It's fast paced, with strong dialog between the characters. The only thing I was a little confused by was an apparent loose end with the hit and run story. Not sure why it was there and how it was suppose to tie into the story. Regardless, it was a great story and I enjoyed reading.