“There are many forensic experts. There are many writers. Rarely, however, do the two meld as seamlessly and synergistically as Lisa Black.”
—Sacramento Book Review
“She is, quite simply, one of the best storytellers around.”
A former forensic scientist with the Cleveland coroner’s office, Lisa Black knows the world she writes about, as she has proven in the past with her gripping thrillers featuring Theresa MacLean (Takeover, Evidence of Murder, Trail of Blood). With Defensive Wounds, Black delivers possibly her most sensational crime fiction masterwork to date—a stunning tale of forensic expert MacLean’s investigation into the brutal murder of a criminal defense attorney at a Cleveland convention that reveals the frightening presence of a serial killer prowling the city. The forensic police thriller remains one of the most popular sub-genres in contemporary mystery fiction, and Defensive Wounds once again proves that Lisa Black is one of the “big guns,” in the top tier alongside Patricia Cornwell, Kathy Reichs, Jefferson Bass, and Michael Connelly.
Someone appears to be taking "kill all the lawyers" literally in Black's contrived fourth suspense novel to feature Cleveland forensic investigator Theresa MacLean (after 2010's Trail of Blood). At a convention of criminal defense lawyers at the Ritz-Carlton, the trussed naked body of beautiful, bright, detested lawyer Marie Corrigan turns up in the supposedly unoccupied Presidential Suite. Theresa's daughter, Rachel, who's working at the hotel for the summer, notifies her mother about the death. Homicide detectives John Powell and Neil Kelly as well as Theresa's cousin Frank Patrick investigate the many suspects, including attendees and hotel workers. When two other lawyers are killed, connections appear between the first victim and the Ritz-Carlton's head of security, Marcus Dean; young restaurant staffer William Rosedale; and fellow lawyer Dennis Britton. As Theresa does the painstaking forensic analysis the job demands, she worries about Rachel's attraction to William and his involvement in a sealed juvenile case. A dependence on coincidences weakens the plot, but the detailed forensics will keep genre fans turning the pages.