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The Barnes & Noble Review
A former defense lawyer, D. W. Buffa has earned a reputation for writing taut courtroom dramas -- such as The Judgment, his 2001 Edgar nominee for Best Novel -- marked by a highly effective use of realistic legal maneuvers and litigation tactics to produce tension. In The Legacy, he once again thrusts his protagonist, Portland attorney Joseph Antonelli, into an absorbing, complex case, one that will lead to terrifying revelations and a trail of corruption, old world money, destroyed innocence, and plenty of dirty politics.
Jeremy Fullerton, a California senator with presidential ambitions, is shot in the front seat of his car after giving a fiery speech. Jamal Washington, a young black medical student, is arrested fleeing the scene and charged with murder despite his protests that he was only trying to aid the dying senator. Enter Antonelli, who is willing to stake his reputation -- and possibly his life -- to clear Washington in a case that is bound to uncover secrets a lot of powerful people would prefer to leave buried. Eventually Antonelli tracks the intricate machinations behind the murder to a grand conspiracy in Italy, where the outcome is something completely unexpected.
Buffa uses a sure and steady hand to tell an elaborate tale that moves from the modern-day courts back to a cabal formed decades earlier. Thought-provoking and filled with intricate twists, The Legacy offers fleshed-out characters and a fulfilling story that digs deep into the very ideals of our judicial and political systems. (Tom Piccirilli)