Defending Billy Ryan: A Jerry Kennedy Novel

Overview

Jerry Kennedy has been aptly described by his ex-wife as "the classiest sleazy criminal lawyer inBoston. " Now, Jerry must defend the man that no one else will: Billy Ryan. The longtime commissioner of Public Works has cut one shady deal too many. Even Jerry harbors no illusions about the man's corruption. "If they didn't have Billy for selling the apple to the serpent who peddled it to Eve," he figured, "it was because the serpent refused to testify against him. Professional courtesy and all that. " Jerry also ...

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Overview

Jerry Kennedy has been aptly described by his ex-wife as "the classiest sleazy criminal lawyer inBoston. " Now, Jerry must defend the man that no one else will: Billy Ryan. The longtime commissioner of Public Works has cut one shady deal too many. Even Jerry harbors no illusions about the man's corruption. "If they didn't have Billy for selling the apple to the serpent who peddled it to Eve," he figured, "it was because the serpent refused to testify against him. Professional courtesy and all that. " Jerry also knows that the government can always get a public official if it really wants to—particularly when a plea-bargaining crooked state legislator named Jack Bonaventre is in good voice. The drama that follows in and around the courthouse is vintage Higgins, suffused with the stylish prose and sparkling dialogue for which he is known.

From "the best at writing about lawyers" (John Grisham) comes a brilliant novel that continues the exploits of Jerry Kennedy, known as the classiest sleazy criminal lawyer in Boston. Needing a case badly, he takes on the biggest of his career--one that nobody else wants--defending the once powerful commissioner of public works.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Higgins The Friends of Eddie Coyle , once a Boston lawyer, is known for his talky novels. In the third Jerry Kennedy tale, his narrator-hero's speech is wonderful--he's a crackling, supple raconteur. Following a bruising, impoverishing divorce in early 1986, the veteran Kennedy's law practice is moribund until Massachusetts Superior Court Justice Colin Ryan asks him to defend his father, the state's public works commissioner from time immemorial, against charges of corruption. Everybody knows Billy Ryan has been skimming at the public trough for years, but now an ambitious prosecutor has found a state representative who is willing to testify against him in court. Kennedy's story slips between 1986 and the present readers must pay close attention as he tells how things get done in the Bay State: lawyers, politicians and Mafiosi scratch backs in various ways, and they talk and talk and talk, colorfully and gloriously. Higgins's subtle examination of Boston Irish society is as acute as any by John O'Hara or Louis Auchincloss, but funnier. Irish Alzheimer's? ``You forget everything but your grudges.'' Billy's wake and funeral are delicious. Author tour. Sept.
Library Journal
Nobody doubts that state public works commissioner Billy Ryan tipped off cronies to where a new highway was going to cause land values to skyrocket. Certainly Jerry Kennedy, his lawyer, harbors no illusions, though he can hardly guess the depth of the corruption. This audiobook has much to offer. Don Feldheim's reading captures Kennedy as an intelligent raconteur. Through Kennedy, listeners gain insight into a defense attorney's mind and experience courtroom strategy. If, however, Kennedy fails to charm, he may strike listeners as a long-winded old poop, whose endless digressions attempt to hide the fact that he doesn't have much of a story to tell. While this audiobook lacks most of the elements that usually ensure widespread popularity (e.g., fast pace, suspense, plot), libraries where Higgins circulates well may still want to consider.-- John Hiett, Iowa City P.L.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781470888381
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.
  • Publication date: 6/1/2013
  • Format: CD
  • Edition description: Unabridged
  • Product dimensions: 5.25 (w) x 5.75 (h) x 0.63 (d)

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