An online marketing consultant, an avid reader of 400 + books a year. Professional reader, reviewer, and blogger. Enjoy ARCs and new releases.
By Neal Griffin
Publication Date: 5/12/2015
My Rating: 4 Stars
A special thank you to Macmillan-Tor/Forge and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
Neal Griffin, delivers an edgy and cleverly-plotted page-turner debut -BENEFIT OF THE DOUBT, a suspenseful crime thriller of revenge, corruption, and murder.
Harlan Lee has one thing in mind. Revenge. He has seventeen years of rage and intensity, a reminder of all the things he missed by being caged. He is out of prison and has no plans to live the straight and narrow. A settlement of more than one old score.
William Petite, the DA who put him away. Then to Newberg, Wisconsin to include a former sheriff, Lipinski and Norgaard, Newberg’s retired police chief, now institutionalized.
Ben Sawyer, a fired Oakland officer, now with the Newberg police. Ben was honest enough to accept the blame, with an encounter with a fugitive in Oakland, Calif. He had been a thirteen year veteran of Oakland PD. A sergeant in charge of the prestigious Gang Suppression Unit. He was a rising star; however, shitcanned back to Newberg, his childhood home. A place that on the law enforcement career ladder came in about six rungs below mall cop.
Ben happens to be Norgaard’s son-in-law, married to Alex with twelve year old son, Jake. They both grew up in Newberg, and the place she met her husband, holding much significance. Alex has had a life of cops; an absentee husband and cop, Ben, and the other-her dad, now having suffered a severe stroke, possible brain damage and total loss of speech, residing at the Newberg Convalescent Center. Even though, Alex feels a sense of peace in this isolated prairie town forty-five minutes west of Milwaukee--this soon changes.
Ben has many enemies in Newberg. He is now an outsider, mistrusted by his fellow officers. A nonplayer. The Chief’s boy. He had been thrown to the wolves by his own department, and tossed aside after almost fifteen years of dedicated service. Now he and his family are forced to return, working for his father-in-law and small town America.
Soon the small-town peace turns into corruption, evil, drugs, payoffs, cover-ups, violence, vengeance, conspiracy, and murder with increased tension in Ben’s personal and work life. To further complicate his life, Harlan is closing in on him, next. Alex is accused of murder. He has to find someone to help him. He needs an ally. Who is to blame? Can Ben go from disgraced to hero before someone takes him down?
Griffin sets the stage slowly, for a taunt fast-paced, action filled compelling crime thriller of revenge and dark family secrets, leaving readers glued to the pages to solve the mystery, while rooting for their favorite characters. This cleverly –plotted multi-layered riveting cop procedural comes from an author who has the inside scoop with a career in law enforcement, and talents of an author, to follow for years to come. Looking forward to the next!
From revenge, betrayal and redemption, Griffin hits the ground running, as reflective throughout the pages of this smashing debut. Fans of Karin Slaughter, Andrew Gross, and Harlan Coben are assured to enjoy this adrenaline ride.