GRAVEWRITER (Legal Thriller-Rhode Island-Cont) – VG
Arsenault, Mark – 3rd book
Thomas Dunne books / St. Martin’s Minotaur, 2006- US Hardcover – USBN

First Sentence: That ain’t piss down my pants, thought the old convict.

Billy Povich has lost his wife to an automobile accident and his job to gambling. Now he and his seven-year-old son are living in a small apartment with his elderly father. Billy plans for one big win to get out of debt and to kill the man driving the car in wife was in when she was killed. Martin J. Smothers is a defense attorney his newest case is to defend Peter Shadd, an escaped con who is on trial for murdering a fellow escapee. The trial is going badly; there are only two jurors who think Shadd is innocent. One is Billy and one is suddenly dead.

Arsenault is a very good writer. He takes his experience as a newspaper journalist and editor and provides us with very human characters who captured my interest from the start. These are people you can see and know and with them comes humor and pathos arising from situations rather than “the joke.” I particularly enjoyed his ability to have really two primary protagonists and weave them together but without having them directly interact until the very end. The plots and subplots were interesting and each worked. I’ve enjoyed his previous works and he is now on my auto-buy list. Highly recommended.

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