Thursday, August 12, 2010

Audiobook Thursday - SOLOMON VS LORD

FIRST LINE: "The man in the holding cell loosened his tie, tossed his rumpled suit coat into a corner, and stretched out on the hard plastic bench.

SOLOMON VS LORD starts out with Steve Solomon and Victoria Lord on opposing sides of the courtroom. Solomon is a seasoned defense attorney whose clients tend to be those who pay in trade as opposed to cash. Solomon knows all the rules and exactly how to manipulate  Victoria Lord is a young, idealistic prosecutor who plays by the rules, does everything by the book. However, circumstances find Lord dismissed from the prosecutor's office just after her friend Katrina Barksdale is accused of murdering her wealthy husband...during sex. Against her will, Lord teams up with Solomon to defend Barksdale and all hell breaks loose in the Florida legal system.

Sound like you've heard this plot before? I guarantee that if you haven't read this book you haven't experienced this plot before. Seems like about every third book I've read this year, I've said, "where have I been?" Good thing I'm due to say it again because Paul Levine's SOLOMON VS LORD is fantastic! I can't believe it took me this long to discover it, but I'm glad that I now have the good fortune to look forward to the rest of this series.

Back to the plot! What may seem like a familiar skeleton is augmented with sharp wit, complex characters, pitch-perfect dialogue and sheer fun. Solomon is raising his nephew Bobby who happens to be borderline autistic. Solomon rescued Bobby from his mother, Solomon's sister; while he may not have the most conventional child-rearing skills, Solomon deeply loves his nephew and is fighting the child welfare system to be able to maintain custody. Victoria, not Vicky, is engaged to a wealthy avocado farmer and real estate developer. The relationships between these four, as well as the colorful supporting cast make for subplots that compliment the main plot and enrich the overall novel. Levine expertly blends the serious with the humorous so that the book is never absurdly humorous or depressingly serious. And who can resist chapter titles like "Hoochie-Coochie Man"?

I listened to SOLOMON VS LORD on audiobook from Blackstone Audio narrated by Christopher Lane. It's hard for me to come up with much besides he did a magnificent job. There were times I thought I'd have to pull over to the side of the road while driving because Levine's humor combined with Lane's delivery of it was rip-roaring funny. And there were other times when I felt a literal pull in my chest from the emotional reaction to the scene. And my exercise sessions always ended up being 10-15 minutes longer than planned because I just needed to listen a leeettle bit longer. He was able to give unique life to every character from Solomon and Lord to Bobby to Solomon's parolee-assistant CeCe to Cadillac Johnson, Solomon's elderly black friend. No character, especially female characters, had an annoyingly awkward sound and there was never any over-dramatization. Lane is a great narrator and I think he was an excellent match for this novel.

Now, I'm looking forward to THE DEEP BLUE ALIBI, the second book in this wonderfully entertaining legal series. SOLOMON VS LORD is available in mass market paperback from Bantam (ISBN: 978-0-44-024-2734); it is available from Audible for audio download and is available from Blackstone Audio on CD or MP3

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1 comments:

Thoughts of Joy August 23, 2010 at 11:55 AM  

I really want to listen to this one, but it's not available through my library system. :( It's been on my TBR List for quite some time. I'm so happy to see that you loved it.

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