About Me

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Melfort, Saskatchewan, Canada
I am a lawyer in Melfort, Saskatchewan, Canada who enjoys reading, especially mysteries. Since 2000 I have been writing personal book reviews. This blog includes my reviews, information on and interviews with authors and descriptions of mystery bookstores I have visited. I strive to review all Saskatchewan mysteries. Other Canadian mysteries are listed under the Rest of Canada. As a lawyer I am always interested in legal mysteries. I have a separate page for legal mysteries. Occasionally my reviews of legal mysteries comment on the legal reality of the mystery. You can follow the progression of my favourite authors with up to 15 reviews. Each year I select my favourites in "Bill's Best of ----". As well as current reviews I am posting reviews from 2000 to 2011. Below my most recent couple of posts are the posts of Saskatchewan mysteries I have reviewed alphabetically by author. If you only want a sentence or two description of the book and my recommendation when deciding whether to read the book look at the bold portion of the review. If you would like to email me the link to my email is on the profile page.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Trial of Passion by William Deverell

16. - 578.) Trial of Passion by William Deverell – In the mid-1990’s a naked, but for a men’s tie, Kimberly Martin adorned with lipstick designs (“Shameless” being the brand) and red circled nipples makes an early morning arrival at the home of retired Anglican bishop, Dr. Hawthorne, accusing her UBC law professor, Jonathan O’Donnell, the next door neighbour, of raping her.
    Experienced Vancouver defence counsel, Gowan Cleaver, is doing a perfectly competent job of defence but the professor longs for the best, Arthur Beauchamp. Unfortunately for O’Donnell, Arthur, pushing 63 has decided to retire to Garibaldi Island in the Gulf Islands. He has tired of his long expired marriage to Annabelle and is disinterested in continuing to muck around in the courts of the land.
    All are surprised that the pompous, he would prefer donnish, Beauchamp would retire to an acreage on the rustic island. Yet the Latin quoting lawyer is but another character on the island. He does struggle to convince some neighbours his name is pronounced Beecham. He adjusts well to his fellow residents.
    Beauchamp is comfortably settled when the firm descends by float plane to lure him to defend O’Donnell. Even a lurid tale of lust and a well paying client, the Faculty Association, cannot persuade his return.
    Eventually O’Donnell’s entreaties bring Beauchamp back into the fray. It is a dandy trial with vivid evidence. After a faltering beginning Beauchamp returns to the quick witted skilful advocate he was before his departure for Eden. I wish myself and the lawyers I oppose in court were as deft and clever in our comments. It is an amazing trial with twists I neither could have forseen nor have I seen in a court. Deverell creates a trial that is compelling in the extreme while keeping the evidence and arguments within the rules of court. 
I defy a reader to put down the book as the trial accelerates.
    While a wonderful writer of trials Deverell has also created a fascinating personal story of the troubled big city lawyer creating a new life in rural Canada. I am seeking out more Beauchamp. Great. (Mar. 26/11)
 

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