Title: Guilt By Association
Author: Marcia Clark
Release Date: April 20, 2011
Publisher: Mulholland Books
Genre: Legal Thriller
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
Rachel Knight is a deputy DA working in Los Angeles, assigned to a special division where she works on cases starting from the initial investigation. When her coworker and close friend Jake is murdered, Rachel is devastated. But what makes it even worse is that he was found in a seedy motel with a picture of a naked teenager in his pocket. Though everyone around Rachel draws automatic conclusions from the incriminating evidence, Rachel refuses to pronounce her friend guilty. Instead, she delves into investigating his murder, determined to discover who killed Jake and why.
The name on the cover of this book, Marcia Clark, might be enough to turn off fans of legal thrillers. After all, she was the prosecutor in the O.J. Simpson trial, and readers may deduce that she’s probably capitalizing on her fame and name recognition to segue into writing. But if you ignored this novel just because of the author, you’d be doing yourself a disservice. Marcia Clark has written an excellent, tightly plotted novel with a feisty, smart heroine that readers will love.
Clark clearly used her inside knowledge of a DA’s office in order to write Guilt By Association. She does an excellent job making the reader feel like they are immersed in the scene. The details are meticulous and well drawn; I thoroughly enjoyed witnessing the inner workings of a DA’s office.
The real highlight of Guilt By Association, though, is Rachel Knight. She’s smart, funny, and completely endearing. I loved her loyalty to Jake, and how, despite the fact that this horrible evidence is staring her in the face and that she’s warned off the case multiple times, she can’t leave it alone. She has to know the truth. That determination really speaks to her character. While she is excellently developed and fully fleshed out, hints at Rachel’s past over the course of the novel demonstrate that there is a lot more to this woman than meets the eye.
The novel’s plot is completely gripping and moves very quickly. Readers won’t have a chance to become bored as they race through the twists and turns of this book. Clark ties together all the disparate threads of this novel excellently, with a satisfying and stunning conclusion that readers will love. Additionally, the prose is sharp and the dialogue is very smart and snappy. The book is an incredible amount of fun from beginning to end.
I can’t say enough great things about Guilt By Association, so what I will say is to pick this book up as soon as possible. I absolutely loved getting to know Rachel and I was really impressed with Clark’s writing talent. I can only hope that this is the beginning of a series, as I’m not quite ready to say goodbye to Rachel Knight.