By Reason Of Insanity
Tyndale, May 2008, $22.95
In Virginia Beach, The Tidewater Times reporter Catherine O'Rourke covers the homicide trial of Annie Newburg Hofstetter, accused of murdering her husband Richard in premeditated cold blood. Her renowned attorney Quinn Newberg uses the insanity defense of a woman pushed over the edge by physical and mental abuse. Thanks to weeping Juror 5, the case ends for now in a mistrial.
Over the next few months The Avenger of God has been kidnapping and murdering Tidewater residents whom the serial killer believes violated the Lord. Cat has some insider information, but when the court demands shereveal her insider anonymous law enforcement source to Detective Jamarcus Webb, she refuses and goes to jail making her part of the story. While behind bars, Cat begins to have distressing visions of these horrific crimes as if she was an eye-witness to the Avenger’s vigilante justice. She tells Jamarcus what she “sees” and he thinks she knows too much not to be the Avenger. The police arrest Cat who hires Quinn to defend her even though his approach means he assumes his client is guilty.
Filled with twists, this is a terrific legal thriller that grips the reader from the moment that Juror 5 ends the O’Rourke trial and never slows down as Cat prays that the Vegas legal magician can get her off the hook even if BY REASON OF INSANITY. The story line is fast-paced as Cat continues to get visions of the Avenger’s serial killings. Although a romantic subplot between lawyer and client is somewhat muted, it still feels forced yet Randy Singer as he did with THE CROSS EXAMINATION OF OLIVER FINNEY brings up timely jurisprudence issues as he provides a fascinating look at the insanity plea.