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Brilliant, powerhouse lawyer Gail Connor is looking to make partner at her upscale Miami firm. Gail's marriage, already on the rocks when the novel begins, finally disintegrates leaving her to juggle motherhood alone, (she has a six year old daughter Karen), along with a career that takes up too much of her time. When her wild, free-spirited sister Renee is found brutally murdered, Gail's career is put on hold as she becomes the prime suspect. There has always been much sibling rivalry between the two, and Gail had always envied Renee's ability to garner favor and claim attention, even though she was the "bad girl," while Gail tried so hard to be the "good" one. Add some fascinating secondary legal cases to the mix, along with a hunky Cuban American defense attorney who has his eyes on the lovely Gail, glimpses of Miami's "old society, old money," alongside the city's darker side and you have the makings of a terrific mystery thriller.
Barbara Parker writes tight, taut prose and surely knows a lot about law and the legal world. Her characters are well defined and very believable, especially Gail Connor. Ms. Connor is not always likable. She is often stressed-out, as we all would be if faced with a failed marriage, a young daughter who is miserable with the sudden changes in her life, a demanding career that doesn't allow for time to cope with family problems, a sister's death and ensuing guilt because of their estrangement, and a murder investigation where all evidence points to her. She is frequently snappish, disagreeable, and not there for her child. Gail has many positive traits also, but what is so refreshing here is that the author gives her heroine normal human frailties - and a human face. One does not always have to like her for the novel to succeed. In fact, one of the reasons the plot is so successful