Methods of Execution

Overview

Matthew Riordan, a character critics have called “part Perry Mason, part Columbo,” is a tough, cynical lawyer who has burned out. Until an old girlfriend, Elizabeth Kleinfeldt, breaks into his self-imposed isolation to ask for his help in appealing the death sentence of Robert Polhaus, a convicted serial killer. Despite his detestation of Polhaus, who appears to be a stone-cold killer, Matt agrees to take on the case, and is drawn into a terrifying underworld of prostitution, sadomasochism, blackmail, and murder....

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Overview

Matthew Riordan, a character critics have called “part Perry Mason, part Columbo,” is a tough, cynical lawyer who has burned out. Until an old girlfriend, Elizabeth Kleinfeldt, breaks into his self-imposed isolation to ask for his help in appealing the death sentence of Robert Polhaus, a convicted serial killer. Despite his detestation of Polhaus, who appears to be a stone-cold killer, Matt agrees to take on the case, and is drawn into a terrifying underworld of prostitution, sadomasochism, blackmail, and murder. Set in Seattle, Methods of Execution is tough, fast-paced entertainment at its very best.

Matt Riordan hoped to leave the law forever. But that was before he decided to appeal the death sentence of an ice-hearted criminal as a serial killer. This is the fifth mystery starring the Seattle lawyer featured in Picture Postcard and Judgment by Fire.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In the fifth Matt Riordan novel, a well-written, well-constructed legal mystery, Huebner ( Picture Postcard ) sets his Seattle lawyer on a cold trail of evidence littered with betrayals of both private lives and professional principles. Riordan's old lover, Liz Kleinfeldt, asks him to help her get a stay of execution for Robert Polhaus, the so-called Motel Room Killer. Something about Polhaus's conviction for a series of rapes and murders smells wrong to Liz, even though the murders stopped after he was caught. Raking over the case history, Riordan discovers that the victims were connected to the same escort service; further evidence, suggesting that some powerful and protected people might have wanted these women dead, leads to another killing. Riordan's investigation builds up complex currents of suspense as each of the major characters in this tale, which focuses on the past, plumbs his or her own troubled personal history. Surprising twists in the story lead to a payoff that, while holding up to scrutiny, nevertheless seems a little weak, especially following the deft characterization and plotting that led up to it. (Apr.)
Library Journal
Although Matthew Riordan gave up his Seattle law practice because of stress, he now agrees to help his sometime lover Elizabeth (also a lawyer) save the life of a convicted serial murderer she believes has been railroaded. Riordan becomes a private investigator in all but name as he struggles against the accused's unsavory reputation, the young victims' association with prostitution, a police cover-up, and a murderer to find the crucial evidence needed. Forceful prose, psychological overtones, and a well-constructed plot make this a winner.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781451667165
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster
  • Publication date: 9/2/2011
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Table of Contents

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