Sunday, April 22, 2012

Bad Faith-Robert K. Tanenbaum

Bad Faith

Robert K. Tanenbaum

Gallery/Pocket, Jun 5 2012, $26.00

ISBN 9781451635522

After learning the facts about the painful death of ten year old Micah Ellis, New York County District Attorney Roger “Butch” Karp prosecutes the parents Nonie and David Ellis for reckless manslaughter because they denied their son treatment for cancer on religious grounds. As God’s emissary Reverend C.G. Westlund is outraged at the DA’s affront to the Lord’s will as he led the Ellis family with their prayers for a divine miracle at his End of Days Reformation Church of Jesus Christ Resurrected.

At the same time Federal prisoner Nadya “Ajmaani” Malovo informs law enforcement officials about planned terrorist attacks. She also works on her escape fueled by her need to destroy Karp. Reverend Westlund and his followers protest the arrests of two their flock, but he conceals the fact that Nonie signed over life insurance taken out on her child to the church and its leader without her husband’s knowledge. Attorney Marlene Ciampi, Karp’s wife, investigates Westlund’s past in Memphis.

The latest Karp-Ciampi tale (see Outrage) is an action-packed in your face thriller. The storyline is fast-paced from the moment Karp chooses to prosecute. However, making Westlund into an avaricious villain instead of a deeply devout believer in prayer rather than medical intervention detracts from the novel as Bad Faith becomes a standard legal thriller rather than a complex First Amendment case.

Harriet Klausner

No comments: