As you read the reviews on Bookshop Talk, you'll notice that every review is positive. No, we're not a bunch of literary
pushovers who love everything we pick up; we just see no point in telling you about a book if we didn't like it.

January 19, 2011

DISMISSED WITH PREJUDICE by Christopher Meyerhoeffer, 2010

Dismissed with Prejudice
Nick Jelaco returns home after successfully litigating the most important case of his career and walks into a nightmare. His wife has been brutally murdered, and his young daughter is missing. As Nick searches for answers, he finds an unlikely friend in Simone Panache, the sister of convicted murderer Cole Panache. As the improbable allies work together to unravel a web of lies and corruption dating back to Cole's murder conviction, the partners uncover a conspiracy involving police officers, lawyers from Nick's law firm, and the prosecutor who put Simone's brother in prison. (Amazon product description)

Review by Emily Sonderegger, Book Addict

I'm a pretty soft sell when it comes to legal or medical thrillers. Give me a good story, and I'm happy. It's especially nice when the author can toss in some twists that I don't see coming. That was definitely the case with this book.

See, I love John Grisham, but I can usually figure things out about halfway through. After that, the books lose a little something for me. With "Dismissed with Prejudice," I'd start thinking I had things figured out nicely, and BAM! Something would change. I never, ever suspected the real culprit. Didn't even cross my mind. I had things tied up so nicely in my mind that the ending came as a shock. Mr. Meyerhoeffer does a masterful job of leading the reader to the conclusion he wants them to reach and then springs a huge surprise ending on them. Don't think that by knowing that there is a surprise coming that you'll get it figured out. I'm very good at picking up clues in books, and I didn't see it coming even a little bit.

I really liked that it wasn't all clear cut for Nick. Sometimes, things just seem to go a little too easy for the hero. Not here. Nick really suffered on his journey to solve his wife's murder and find his daughter, Darby. (Not that I enjoyed his suffering, but it made things more real and made him a more relatable and likable character.) He really had to work hard and go through hell to get to the bottom of things.

At first, I wasn't sold on the idea that Nick could be an accomplished fighter even when drunk. I even made some notes in my Kindle edition of the book about that. After a more careful reading of that part, his past history as a Delta Force operative made it make sense. His training would have been so thorough that it kicked in at the first hint of danger, even in his drunken state. According to my military friends, that kind of training doesn't go out the door, EVER. I still don't know though, if I buy that he could incapacitate three big guys without taking much damage himself. Still, it made for exciting reading.
The supporting characters were believable too. Gates, Simone, Sato, the attorneys, Jefferson Hughes...all of them were well-written. Each had a specific part to play and they played their parts well.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book.

Market: Adult Fiction
Language: Moderate
Sensuality: Mild
Violence: Moderate
Mature Themes: depression, death, alcohol abuse

Book formats (there's another book with this same title, so make sure to check the author's name, or just click one of these links):

To learn more about the author, visit: Christopher Meyerhoeffer


Kim said...

I love a good mystery! Thanks for this review, Emily!

Faith Dossett said...

The Idea Room sent me to this site to check out. I think I'm going to like it! And books like this (Dismissed with Prejudice) are right down my (reading) alley! Thanks!