A Review of Time of Justice by Robin James
I love a good legal thriller and I found it in this novel by Robin James. This is my first time reading anything by her and I must say I was taken by her details of the legal and police procedures. If you are a fan of Law & Order, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (SVU) or any other courtroom drama you will enjoy reading this novel.
Meet Mara Brent, a Maumee County (Ohio) prosecutor who has blown the lid off a brutal rape case from twenty years ago. She had inherited this cold case when she joined the office eight years ago. Denise Silvers, the victim was the captain of the cheerleading team and the homecoming queen who now uses a wheelchair to get around because of the brutal attack by Neil Shumway. Although a rape kit and samples (blood, hair, semen) were collected from Denise, her attacker stayed under the radar for many years because his DNA was not in the system. It wasn’t until Mara submitted Shumway’s DNA to a genealogy site that he was identified, arrested and charged because he fathered a daughter, he didn’t know he had who was in search of her birth parents.
With lots of eyes on the case, Mara has to keep focused on winning especially with Matt Orville, Shumway’s attorney who would stop at nothing to get his client off even bringing Mara’s personal life to the forefront. Yes, Mara’s personal life was messy. She was trying to figure out what to about her husband’s (Jason – Ohio’s Assistant Attorney General) infidelity and the possibility he may have used campaign funds to pay off his mistress. This distraction and trying to shield their autistic 9- year-old-son from all of this was a lot to balance.
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this storyline ripped from the headlines. The author did a great job describing the legal courtroom scenes with such details that kept you on the edge of your seat waiting on the judge to rule in the case. The characters, their motivations, and dialogue were very realistic. I loved the twists and turns once Mara started digging more into the witness statements. This added an extra layer of complication to the case that Mara had no idea existed. I also loved that she fought so hard to bring about justice for Denise. It was a great read and one I would highly recommend!
Some of my favorite lines:
“So, this isn’t about my skill in the courtroom at all. You think my personal life will interfere with me doing my job? Phil. You know me. You know what I can do. And you know I’m the only one who can make sure Neil Shumway goes down for this.”
“And it’s not all the way up to me,” he said. “Mara, Matt Orville is a predator. A shark.”
“So am I,” I said, my voice dropping low.
“I know. But he’s going to go after you. He’ll air your dirty laundry. And if that happens, it’s not just bad for the case.”
Rating: 5 stars