Mickey Haller returns in 'The Gods of Guilt'

By Jeff Ayers, Associated Press
Posted12/11/2013 5:45 AM
  • "The Gods of Guilt" is Michael Connelly's latest book starring lawyer Mickey Haller.

    "The Gods of Guilt" is Michael Connelly's latest book starring lawyer Mickey Haller. ASSOCIATED PRESS/LITTLE, BROWN AND COMPANY

Mickey Haller, the Lincoln Lawyer, returns to tackle his most personal case in "The Gods of Guilt."

Matthew McConaughey played Haller in 2011's "The Lincoln Lawyer," and that movie plays a minor role in Michael Connelly's new novel. Because of the popularity of the film, there are now tons of lawyers running around in cars, to the point where Haller sometimes gets into the wrong vehicle when he's not paying attention. This adds a humorous dimension to an otherwise dark tale.

Haller receives an urgent text that conveys a murder, and he rushes to the jail. The person arrested is accused in the death of one of the women he knew from running her escort service website. He claims he's innocent, and the woman told him if he ever needed a lawyer, Haller was his guy. Haller doesn't want to represent someone he considers an electronic pimp, but when he learns the victim was someone he thought he had helped free from the world of prostitution years earlier, the guilt of failure makes him take the case.

To make it more difficult, Haller has recently become estranged from his daughter due to a case where he was able to get a guilty man freed on a technicality. How can he ignore what is morally right to defend people who are obviously guilty? And is his new client just another in a string of people he represents but doesn't trust just to appease his sense of culpability?

Connelly is a master of crime fiction, and his latest Mickey Haller book continues the trend of compelling stories while forcing the reader to grapple with moral ambiguities. He's dominated both sides of the justice system, and his latest trip into the courtroom will continue to expand his reputation and fan base.

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