Scott Turow delivers Pleading Guilty as an unedited report dictated by Mack Malloy, an ex-cop turned lawyer, to his firm’s top management about their partner who disappeared along with $5.6 million.
That presentation lets readers find out about the crime and the characters in a manner that’s both shocking and, in retrospect, predictable.
Outside the courtroom, Bert Kamin, Mack’s partner at G&G, is caught up in sports betting with other macho guys who claim to have insider knowledge. Others of Mack’s associates in G&G have peculiarities that might mask unorthodox, possibly even criminal, behavior.
Mack and Emilia “Brushy” Bruccia, his associate and sex-partner, joke that their gossip is protected lawyer-client communication.
The first place Mack looks for Bert—the Russian Bath—he learns cops have already been there looking for a Kam Roberts, although the Bath pays the local watch commander to prevent such unpleasantness.
Who is Kam Roberts? And why are cops asking about him in Bert Kamin’s haunts?
Divorced, overweight, with an injured knee and booze-soaked psyche, Mack is about as attractive as Horace Rumpole and equally shrewd about crime. But unlike Rumpole, Mack is unlikely to appear in a second novel.
You’ll have to read Pleading Guilty to learn why.
Pleading Guilty by Scott Turow
Ferrar, Straus and Giroux. ©1993. 386 p.
1993 bestseller #8; my grade: A
©2020 Linda G. Aragoni