Free eBook The Fifth WitnessAuthor Michael Connelly –

More of a 3.5 since there are some major twists turns, but the title character s moment was a bit weak there were major pacing issues probably that s why the moment was weak The court room scenes dragged while other parts, especially the end, jumped in time blazed by almost outlines I m sure the court scenes were realistic, but a bit too much so Asking the sames questions is various ways got very old very fast, especially for the minor points I ve noticed Connelly s writing is gettingpedantic I don t think I ve mentioned it in a review before since the endings usually wind up so well they disguise the sags in the story, but this time was just too much Anyway, I m really on the fence between 3 4 stars for this one.On the plus side, the characters were great, as usual, especially Mickey his life His addiction issues are very well done, as was his scrambling for business I was completely surprised by the reveals at the end I shouldn t have been since Connelly set them up perfectly The change in direction was completely believable, but I just didn t see it coming view spoiler The guilt of his client, after he had finally been convinced of her innocence was wonderful The helium tank was introduced long before well Ditto for his decision to run for DA It was especially this last that gave me whiplash, though hide spoiler Number 4 in the Mickey Haller series.Another great read from the pen of Michael Connelly I don t care wither it s Harry Bosch, Mickey Haller, Terry McCaleb or Jack McEvoy, I can t get enough.This has everything you could want in a courtroom thriller There s the defenceless, vulnerable woman, Lisa Trammel, who is being hounded by the banks to foreclose on her home As if that s not enough, she has now been charged with the murder of the said banks property manager Lurking in the back ground is the omnipresent MOB.The police appear to have a near water tight case against Lisa Mickey has been hired to find if the water tight case has a leak Find that leak and make it big enough for Lisa to swim through There is a fair bit of courtroom antics but it is never dull Both the prosecution and the defence are well matched and it s a real tussle for dominance No body is taking prisoners The end is not all that unexpected but it has a real take that sucker moment.Highly entertaining and highly recommended. Mickey Haller Has Fallen On Tough Times He Expands His Business Into Foreclosure Defense, Only To See One Of His Clients Accused Of Killing The Banker She Blames For Trying To Take Away Her Home Mickey Puts His Team Into High Gear To Exonerate Lisa Trammel, Even Though The Evidence And His Own Suspicions Tell Him His Client Is Guilty Soon After He Learns That The Victim Had Black Market Dealings Of His Own, Haller Is Assaulted, Too And He S Certain He S On The Right Trail Despite The Danger And Uncertainty, Haller Mounts The Best Defense Of His Career In A Trial Where The Last Surprise Comes After The Verdict Is In Hours AndMinutes I honestly can t believe how many 4 and 5 star reviews this book has gotten so far.I ve read nearly everything that Connelly has written, and read most of them in very quick succession I hate to be one of those internet extremists who either ABSOLUTELY LOVES something, or declares it THE WORST THING EVER, but yeah This is about the worst book Connelly has ever written.First, it seems rather obvious that Connelly wanted a Mickey Haller novel out around the same time as the big screen version of THE LINCOLN LAWYER, whether he had a compelling story or not He even makes a lame reference to Matthew McConaughey at one point Hilarious Second, Connelly s big sin here is really taking an interesting and topical subject the economic and foreclosure crisis of 2009 2011 , and failing to do anything really INTERESTING with it Connelly himself has published some opinion pieces over the years with a conservative bent, so I was actually surprised that his explanation of the mortgage meltdown pointed some fingers are the big banks and Wall Street Of course, a few lines later, he made sure we understood that MOST of the fault was with the people who took out loans they couldn t afford Sigh I d hope anyone looking for information on what REALLY happened has read or will read Michael Lewis s EXCELLENT book THE BIG SHORT I wish Connelly had You could argue that it isn t really his job to do an in depth novel looking at the vagaries of the corporate world, and that his readers aren t expecting him to do so I agree, to an extent, but to simply use it as a plot device here seemed somehow cheap to me.Third, the repetition of certain elements throughout the book became unbearable How many times does Haller turn around and yell at someone because they missed evidence or failed to uncover something At least three or four it seemed How many times do we have people using first names during dialog Seriously, I know that some people might become confused whenthan three people are talking to each other, but do we really need hey, Jennifer, that s a good point, Jennifer, why don t you take it, Jennifer all within the same PAGE Who talks like that The courtroom scenes are also devoid of any tension of flow because the prosecutor objects and sidebars to every second or third line out of Haller s mouth Might be realistic, I suppose, but it reads incredibly poorly in practice.Fourth, I couldn t stand the way Connelly chose to structure this book He gives us a dippy liberal ex teacher, of course who seems too smarmy at first glance, but seems completely innocent He spends the entire novel showing how this is true, finding all kinds of outside evidence, presenting the evidence, getting us on HER and Haller s side, and then OF COURSE revealing in the last few pages how we ve all been duped and she had done it all along The truly stupid thing is that she really SHOULDN T have killed this guy, based on everything that we were told in the previous 90% of the novel It made little sense, but I guess that s why Connelly made her have also murdered her husband she didn t NEED a reason to do it, she s just crazy Duh I m not one that usually guesses the outcome of mystery stories early, but I knew that this twist was coming Connelly made such a big deal about how Haller believed in her innocence that you just knew it was going to play out the way it did.Fifth, I also couldn t believe the way Connelly chose to end the book, and his obviously skewed beliefs that defense attorneys are somehow evil and unnecessary to our judicial process Yes, Mickey Haller has always been presented as something of a scumball, and he s always made grumblings about how defense attorneys are needed but hated, etc., etc., but here we have a man who announces at the end of the book that he s decided to run for the D A s office because he can t stand hanging around with those types of people anyReally There s no place in the world for a crusading defense lawyer NONE of the people who are put in front of the courts ARE innocent The government never abuses its power Wow I guess we have come an awfully long way from the days of Atticus Finch and Perry Mason In this day and age where it seems our elected officials and our corporate masters are using the courts to their advantages, it sure seems like we could use a guy who stood up for the underdog I guess we re past that these days.Lastly, there s a rather disturbing strain of misogyny that runs through this book Aside from Haller himself, nearly all of the other characters in the book are female, and nearly all of them come out looking like fools, bitches, or harpies Not sure who broke this man s heart, but I hope he can seek help for these issues he seems to be having It really does kind of pain me to dislike this book so much, as I ve enjoyed many of Connelly s previous works Here s hoping the next Bosch book can redeem him for me. The fourth book in the Mickey Haller series and a bad economy has impacted the Lincoln Lawyer too Crime hasn t gone down but paying clients have so Mickey expands his business to help clients who are in danger of losing their homes to foreclosure The foreclosure business is booming.One of Mickey s new clients is a woman named Lisa Trammel, a school teacher and single mother Her husband disappeared and now she is in danger of losing her home Lisa not only badgers Mickey with phone calls demanding status updates she also starts a campaign against the bank, WestLand Financial She becomes such a nuisance that WestLand obtains a restraining order against her When Mitchell Bondurant, the banker who heads WestLand s mortgage department, is murdered in the bank s parking garage Lisa becomes a person of interest and is then arrested.The evidence against Lisa appears to be strong and it is up to Mickey to come up with an alternate theory to present to the jury He has his work cut out for him with a formidable prosecutor, Andrea Freeman, and a client he doesn t particularly like A client who makes things difficult for Mickey.As usual in the series there is a subplot that revolves around Mickey s hopes to win back his ex wife, Maggie McFierce McPherson, and his devotion to his daughter Rather than being a detraction from the story these add a human element to the character I found myself smiling a couple of times such as when Mickey had his daughter and she had pancakes for dinner or when he went to kiss the top of her head while she was doing homework and got an indignant Dad in response.Usually I prefer a good old fashion murder mystery to a courtroom drama I find all the objections, sustained, overruled, etc tedious What raised this to four stars for me was the ending This is one of those stories that left me saying Wow. Good series adramatic storyline..lots of courtroom antics plus lawyer stuff then it ended with a plot twist..well written paperback I actually am a trial lawyer specializing in homicide cases I ve done over twenty murder trials on both sides, so I probably should just stop reading these kinds of books because I always find procedural and legal errors that annoy me and then I annoy everyone else by pointing them out and complaining about them A disclaimer here no on will watch any of the CSi or Law and Order shows with me any Most common response I get it s just fiction, get over it So, I m not going to nit pick this book But the problem with the book is not just an accumulation of little errors, the problem is that it is founded on a completely implausible premise that an experience and presumably good criminal trial lawyer would base his entire trial strategy on being able to badger a witness into taking the 5th or flipping the dime or whatever cute phrase he had for it Only a very bad lawyer would do this because, in reality, all of that would have happened if it was allowed to happen at all, which is doubtful outside of the presence of the jury In the context of the story it felt like a cop out, like the author couldn t be bothered to think up a strategy for his lawyer to use to win the case that was both compelling and strategically sound I know that the author is not a lawyer, but if he has elected to write a story that is focused almost entirely on a trial, that doesn t seem like too much for the reader to ask I was very disappointed that I had waded through the detailed chapters of trial testimony only to be rewarded with that.Also, I felt like, at the end of the book, the author just gave up on the main character Mickey Haller I read the Lincoln Lawyer and enjoyed it because Mickey Haller is the kind of fly by the seat of your pants, charismatic type of individual that you really do encounter arguing cases for the defense in criminal courts He s fun But the big revelation that the end of this book that he wants to to mothball his fleet of Lincoln s and run for DA felt like a betrayal of the character. It s the middle of the housing crisis and tough times for lawyers Criminal defense attorney Mickey Haller, ever the opportunist and survivor, has shifted his practice to handle clients under foreclosure When one of them is arrested for the murder of the banker who s started foreclosure procedures on her home, Mickey finds himself handling a high profile case that becomes a potential beacon for all those disenfranchised homeowners facing displacement This was all courtroom drama and psychological game playing Mickey is pitted against a formidable prosecutor, Andrea Freeman, and handling an unlikable client I liked seeing Mickey in action, not always making the right decisions but appreciating his thought processes behind them He s again at a crossroad, torn between doing what he needs to do to win and being the honorable guy for his daughter and ex wife, Maggie I really liked how he acknowledged the conflict and his imperfections but would prefer that he just pick a lane and live with the choice Peter Giles has become Mickey even though Matthew McConaughey is still my image of him I ve just merged the two I love his performance and hope this never changes I liked the story, didn t love it, but the ending was perfect It was fitting for the man who continues to challenge himself to remain noble in the midst of representing some pretty despicable clients. In a difficult economy, the criminal defense business is not all that it used to be and so Mickey Haller, the Lincoln Lawyer, is reduced to defending clients who are about to lose their homes to foreclosure One of his clients, a not very pleasant woman named Lisa Trammel, is not content simply to let Mickey wage the legal battle on her behalf She begins her own campaign on line and in the streets to defend herself and others against what she perceives to be the villainy of the greedy bankers who are attempting to kick them out of their homes.Lisa becomes enough of a nuisance that WestLand Financial, the bank that is attempting to foreclose on her home, secures a restraining order against her Shortly thereafter, Mitchell Bondurant, the banker who heads the mortgage department at WestLand, is savagely killed in the bank s parking garage Critical evidence points to Lisa Trammel as the killer, but she insists that she has respected the restraining order and that she was nowhere near the bank the morning that Bondurant was murdered.Lisa retains Mickey to defend her against the murder charge and Mickey suddenly finds himself back in court, doing what he loves He can hardly love his client, though, who turns out to be a major pain in the neck and who complicates the defense in a variety of ways Mickey constructs an alternate theory to explain the crime and the question is whether he can get a jury to buy his suggestion before his client torpedoes the case and Mickey along with it.This is another cleverly constructed legal thriller from Michael Connelly with a ripped from the headlines storyline The courtroom scenes, in particular, are very well done and will keep you on the edge of your seat As in all of the Haller books, there is also an ongoing subplot involving Mickey s relationship with his ex wife and their daughter Connelly s fans and others who enjoy legal thrillers but who have not yet made Mickey Haller s acquaintance are sure to enjoy this page turner of a book SPOILER ALERT PLEASE DO NOT READ ANY FARTHER UNLESS YOU WANT TO KNOW HOW THE BOOK ENDS As a side note, one of the things that intrigues me about this series is the fact that in these books, as in real life, virtually all of the clients that Mickey Haller sees as a defense attorney are actually guilty This is still a fairly unusual thing to happen in a legal thriller This genre originated, as a practical matter, with Erle Stanley Gardner s Perry Mason series Mason remains probably the most famous fictional criminal defense attorney of all, and yet amazingly all eighty five of the clients he defended in this series were actually innocent This has continued to be the case with most other books like this As the book progresses, our defense attorney hero must not only conduct a brilliant defense of his or her client, but he or she must also expose the Real Killer in the process.To Connelly s credit, he doesn t do this Still, though, he seems uncomfortable with the idea of allowing his hero, Attorney Haller, to exercise his considerable talents in the service of allowing a bad person to escape his or her just desserts In the last Haller novel, Connelly addressed the issue by allowing Haller to switch sides and join the prosecution In this book, as in The Lincoln Lawyer, we have another twist at the end that allows Mickey to achieve justice in spite of the brilliant defense he has mounted To my mind, this tactic worked well the first time around, but I m not so sure it s as plausible here Connelly may have resolved the issue with another totally unexpected twist at the end of this book, and it will be interesting to see the direction that the author takes Haller in the future. I m on a Michael Connelly Micky Haller roll right now I picked up THE FIFTH WITNESS while on vacation and stayed up late the other night to finish it Not to worry, I went to bed satisfied.Once again, Michael Connelly excels in courtroom drama What continues to amaze is how well Connelly thoroughly understands the Criminal Justice System, which actually is neither a system nor about justice It s about who can best entertain a jury with their magic show and sleight of hand, which is often only smoke and mirrors that obfuscate the salient facts Trials are about winning, not about justice Connelly reveals the inner workings of the system and shows how it works doesn t work I loved it because it was so real and very much like what I ve experienced during my many years in law enforcement.Connelly s Micky Haller defends school teacher Lisa Trammel, accused of killing the bank manager she believes is responsible for the foreclosure on her home He finds evidence to support her contention that she was framed, which adds to his passion to help win her freedom Haller s feisty integrity pits him against a sharp and experienced prosecutor, while trying the patience of a Superior Court judge My own ruling is that Connelly s plot, pacing, and dialogue sparkled He did an excelent job capturing the demeanor and jargon used in sidebars and judge s chambers This was an excellent read, and I highly recommend it.