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posted: 5/12/2013 6:00 AM

'Ophelia Cut' is tense, intricate

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  • "The Ophelia Cut" by John Lescroart

    "The Ophelia Cut" by John Lescroart

Associated Press

A young woman makes a bad decision and her father ends up a murder suspect in "The Ophelia Cut," John Lescroart's latest courtroom drama featuring defense attorney Dismas Hardy.

Brittany McGuire meets a man in a coffee shop and realizes he's a loser after one date. Rick Jessup starts harassing her, demanding another chance. She goes to his house to tell him to get lost, then passes out and wakes up in his bed. She realizes she's been drugged and raped.

Twenty-four hours later, Rick is dead and Brittany's father, Moses, becomes the prime suspect. Moses has been sober for quite some time, but he's found completely wasted on alcohol. Also, witnesses saw Moses attack Rick when he learned that Rick was stalking his daughter.

Moses turns to his brother-in-law Dismas for help. Dismas isn't sure Moses is innocent. The witnesses seem to convey guilt, and exoneration, if possible, comes with a high price.

Friends become enemies and moral dilemmas abound in this tense and intricate tale. The story starts off a bit slow, but Lescroart is a master of legal suspense. Once the final page is turned, everything, including the title, makes sense.

"The Ophelia Cut" will be remembered more as a literary endeavor in the vein of Scott Turow than anything Lescroart has done.

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