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London barrister Trish Maguire, now a Queen's Counsel, undergoes messy professional and personal tribulations in her thought-provoking ninth outing (after 2007's Evil Is Done). When her head of chambers is severely injured in an accident, Trish assumes the defense of Clean World Waste Management against Angela Fortwell, who's arguing her own case after her husband died on their marginal Northumberland farm in a CWWM chemical tank explosion. The caring heart under Trish's judicial robes goes out to Angela, but it doesn't stop Trish from making a scrupulous and unorthodox defense. In addition, Trish; George, her partner of 10 years; and her early-teen stepbrother, David, struggle to free David's near-feral friend, Jay, from his slum-dwelling abusive family, like the one Trish herself once had to overcome. As current as today's environmental causes and as eternal as a woman's tightrope walk between self and others, this legal puzzler testifies to Cooper's insight and narrative powers. (June)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.