The last time Tess de Vere saw William Benson, she was a law student on work experience. He was a 21-year-old, led from the dock of the Old Bailey to begin a life sentence for murder. He'd said he was innocent. She'd believed him.
Sixteen years later Tess overhears a couple of hacks mocking a newcomer to the London Bar, a no-hoper with a murder conviction, running his own show from an old fishmonger's in Spitalfields. That night she walks back into Benson's life. The price of his rehabilitation - and access to the bar - is an admission of guilt to the killing of Paul Harbeton, whose family have vowed revenge. He's an outcast. The government wants to shut him down, and no solicitor will instruct him. But he's subsidised by a mystery benefactor, and a desperate woman has turned to him for help: Sarah Collingstone, mother of a child with special needs, accused of slaying her wealthy lover. It's a hopeless case, and the murder trial, Benson's first, starts in four days. The evidence is overwhelming, but, like Benson long ago, she swears she's innocent.
Tess joins the defence team, determined to help Benson survive. But as Benson follows the twists and turns in the courtroom, Tess embarks upon a secret investigation of her own, determined to uncover the truth behind the death of Paul Harbeton on a lonely night in Soho. True to life, fast-paced and absolutely compelling, Summary Justice introduces a new series of courtroom dramas featuring two maverick lawyers driven to fight injustice at any cost.
©2017 John Fairfax (P)2016 Little Brown Book Group
I am an avid multi tasker, I love to listen as I walk, ride, clean... Mostly love crime novels but have an occasional foray into other genre
This is my first 5 star review and I've been listening to audible books for 7 years! This story was clever interesting emotional. Characters and plot well drawn. Better than any court room drama I've read. Especially good as it has been written by a barrister so you feel it is based upon genuine procedure. Narration complimented the story well. I have genuine remorse that the next book hasn't been written yet!
A man with a child in his ears - @shutterspin.
I think Audible have a real gem here and they really need to give it some air. This book introduces a quite unique protagonist. William Benson is a convicted murderer who has fought his way to the heights of the legal profession. What unfolds includes what is in part a traditional British courtroom drama with what to me were very fresh twists on staple evidential plot lines such as DNA and eye-witness sightings.
The legal process was clearly well understood, although I thought the author had got one point wrong . . . until I looked it up! Since then I have discovered that John Fairfax is a new pen name for the award-winning William Brodrick who of course worked as a QC himself which explains his depth of understanding.
The reason I really liked this book though is that it never feels dry and dusty like some courtroom dramas can. Fairfax weaves a clever plot with a number of ingenious twists populated by characters of interest and depth. The intrigue surrounding Benson himself is considerable and clearly set to continue as the series develops. There is warmth, very occasional humour and the author displays an instinctive empathy with his characters.
Daniel Weyman is a narrator that I am familiar with through the Roy Grace series and C J Sansom's excellent "Dominion". He is always good but this is just a notch above his other performances with excellent voicing of each of the characters.
In summary even though it does not seem to be getting a lot of publicity at the time of writing this feels like a series with real potential. An almost made for TV feel pervades some of it. I'm definitely aboard for the ride and to see if Fairfax can develop it further.
Really pleased to have found this author and only did so because Daniel Weyman is one of my favourite narrators. It's a well-plotted story with very convincing court scenes and an intriguing main character. Some questions about him still to be answered, so hoping that there'll be a follow-up!
Recommend this book to anyone who likes legal dramas and complex characters. As always, extremely well interpreted by Daniel Weyman, who has a real gift for bringing stories to life.
Great characters and a wonderful, damaged, main protagonist - to me, reminiscent of Robert Galbraith's Cormoran Strike in some way... Let's have the next one very, very soon please.
I have already, and will never delete this compelling novel, with a heart, from my library.
I'm unable to answer your question. This is a book that stands on its own merit.
Divine voice, compelling character voices; one cannot fault Daniel Weyman, one of the best narrators on audible.
Not a question I would give importance to.
Read the reviews, I did and took a chance. If you truly love a good book, this will not disappoint.
Painter, jeweller, teacher. Passionate listener to audiobooks and reader of print books.
Unpudownable - or rather un-stop-listen-to-able - brilliant story with excellent new characters - can't wait for the next one! I couldn't stop listening - a brilliant reader and if you like courtroom dramas this is top stuff. A slight criticism of some passages in the story - I won't tell you anything - but really, this is a thriller and you have to except some rather unbelievable passages. This does nothing to detract from the interaction between the characters or one's desperate desire for the next part of the story!
Enjoyed this very much.Its such a change to find someone who has the little details right...like "burn" and it's central part on prisoner s lives.Iam a probation officer working in Court.Of course Barristers are not in the least like this rather marvellous protagonist ...if only..but a good light read and sans gore.I read this authors other book The Seventh Lamentation..totally different but so moving and humane.Recomend both books...and I never write reviews usually.
I have read many other, far better legal thrillers. I had little sympathy with either of the main characters, both of whom I found rather boring. However the book makes a valid point re the rehabilitation of criminals. The "hero", a convicted murderer, has served his time and now, having studied for a a law degree during his time in prison, is appointed to act as defence counsel in a murder trial, against a lot of opposition.
Report Inappropriate Content
If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.