Review: The Alligator Man

The Alligator Man by James Sheehan
Genre: Crime, Suspense | ISBN: 9781455508648 | Published: October 8th 2013 by Center Street | Amazon | Goodreads

Rating: 5

From Goodreads: Kevin Wylie's crooked boss wants to run him out of town, and Kevin's long-time girlfriend is ready to take a hike. He decides that now is the time to leave Miami, visit his father, who he hasn't seen in 28 years, and get some answers. Heading back to his hometown, he doesn't realize that he and his dad will become embroiled in a murder case.
The victim, one of the richest and most-hated corporate criminals in America has been dubbed The Alligator Man since pieces of his clothing were found in a local swamp. Billy Fuller had every reason in the world to want Johnson dead and all the evidence leads right to his doorstep. But legendary trial lawyer Tom Wylie believes in Billy and he and his son reunite to fight the courtroom battle for Billy's life.
The Alligator Man is a story of greed, anger, love, redemption and two powerful trial attorneys who fight to the end-- and risk everything--for the truth.

I decided I loved James Sheehan’s work after reading last year’s release The Lawyer’s Lawyer. I jumped at the chance to read this new book and was not at all disappointed.

The Alligator Man starts off with a chapter from the perspective of a murder victim. From the very first chapter, I was hooked. There were two parallel stories going on at the same time, and at one point I didn’t know how they related. About halfway through the book the connection became clear and suddenly every character was a thousand times more important, and every word more interesting. At one point the case seemed hopeless, at others it seemed there could be no other alternate ending. But of course there were several wild twists at the end that totally through me. Yeah, several. Not just one surprise. Like, surprise after surprise. And maybe a little bit of crying at the very end.

All in all, I loved The Alligator Man and am, once again, impressed with Sheehan’s ability to make a dry boring courtroom seem exciting, and to weave a powerful story about humans and love and greed and destiny.

The narration was very good, though not as good as The Lawyer’s Lawyer. In the same way that the narrator didn’t add anything to the book, he didn’t take anything away either.

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