Ken Isaacson's debut legal thriller SILENT COUNSEL centers around the attorney client priviledge. When a man driving recklessly simply for the thrill runs down and kills an innocent six-year-old boy, no one is around to witness. The driver takes off but later has an attack of guilty conscience, but not so guilty that he wants to pay a high penalty. So, he hires an attorney to negotiate a plea for him. The catch is this: the attorney can't reveal the driver's name - attorney client priviledge.
The plot of SILENT COUNSEL mimics Vince's BMW Z4: sleak, fast, powerful. You needn't even bother trying to figure this one out because as soon as you think you have it pegged, Isaacson will pull the rug out from under you, leaving you to wonder what the heck just happened. Which is not to say that Isaacson pulls things out of the air. All the pieces parts are there, they're just weaved together ingeniously so you don't always see them there. Kind of like an Escher piece. It doesn't seem like it would be possible, but you're looking at it right there, so it must be.
The characters in this novel will cause your emotions to run the gamet. You want to feel sympathy but at the same time if they don't scare the be-geebers out of you, something's wrong. I would wring my hands and say out loud, "WHAT are you thinking?" And at the same time wonder exactly what I would do under the same circumstances. Isaacson interjects many viable ethical situations, and while they are at the extreme (or let's hope they're the extreme) of the possible circumstances, they are still viable.
The themes are infused with contraversy, many of the same contraversies that arise in our legal system on a daily basis. Exactly how far should our laws go, the laws that are in place to protect the innocent? The same laws that often end up freeing the guilty.
This is definitely NOT a thoughtless read. You're going to tax your own beliefs as you race through the events that compose SILENT COUNSEL. And at the end, you may have more questions than when you started. I challenge you not to think about them after you've closed the book!