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Reviews > Books >

The Colour of Law

by Mark Gimez

Mine Gott! this book is good. 'The next Grisham', a quote from the Times is emblazoned across the top, and that's most of what you need to know.

A. Scott Fenney is an obscenely rich, corrupt, but heavily indebted corporate lawyer with socially-ambitious wife living in a Dallas millionaire's bubble and driving his Ferrari at the very top trough.

Next minute, he's doing a favour for a judge he can't cross, defending a black heroin addict prostitute on a charge of murdering a prominent senator's wayward son. And the senator is gunning for higher office. Which doesn't go down too well at his office, practically writing off his life. It's like ... immovable forces and unstoppable objects.

A. Scott enrols the help of an old college colleague, intending to pass the buck at least cost, but finds himself, for the first time in his life, almost out of his depth and out-of-control. Against all the advice he'd ever had about keeping Jeckle and Hyde separate, he finds his personal and professional lives sucked together and blown apart.

The courtroom drama, like everything else, is handled stylishly, with every page moving the plot forward. It's a real human interest story, and, until the climax, manages to stay real almost all the way. Talking of that climax, it very narrowly avoids a cliched let-down with an absolute gob-smacker of an ending.

If you are wondering why people tell jokes along the lines of "What do you call 1000 lawyers chained together at the bottom of the ocean?", this book explains. As the story develops, we see how A. Scott loses the high life but gains back his real life, as a human being.

The characters have real depth, although in trying to create a realistic portrayal of Dallas social issues, Gimez may be getting a little out of his own. There's every facet of greed, love, desparation, betrayal, humor... did I mention greed? Dickensian. I absolutely loved it, and can't think why anyone else wouldn't.

Very highly recommended! In fact, I'd probably buy limericks by Mark Gimez if he wrote them.