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The Suspect
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The Suspect

3.7 28
by John Lescroart

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When Dr. Caryn Dryden is found floating dead in her hot tub, homicide inspector Devine Juhle targets a suspect close to home: her husband, Stuart Gorman. After all, Stuart recently asked for a divorce...and he stands to gain millions in insurance. His alibi—that he was at his cabin on Echo Lake



When Dr. Caryn Dryden is found floating dead in her hot tub, homicide inspector Devine Juhle targets a suspect close to home: her husband, Stuart Gorman. After all, Stuart recently asked for a divorce...and he stands to gain millions in insurance. His alibi—that he was at his cabin on Echo Lake that weekend—doesn't keep him out of hot water. But maybe a shrewd attorney will.

Gina Roake, a partner in Dismas Hardy's firm, is eager o take on such a high-profile case, especially when the client's innocence seems so easy to prove. Yet the more time she spends with Stuart, the more complicated her feelings become; she feels strangely drawn to him at first, then has to confront the possibility of a dark history lurking in his past. Desparate to know the truth, Gina calls in Wyatt Hunt to investigate. Before the facts are in, her client is on the lam; he's already been tried in the press, and so he's certain the courtroom won't bring him any mercy either. Racing to a stunning conclusion as Gina uncovers disturbing answers, John Lescroart spins a chilling story of secrets, love, and lies.

Editorial Reviews

The Barnes & Noble Review
Following closely on the heels of 2006's The Hunt Club, John Lescroart crafts another San Francisco–based thriller around a case involving a popular writer wrongfully accused of murdering his wife -- and the attorney who will do anything to clear his name.

Stuart Gorman, a bestselling outdoors writer who advocates spiritual healing through nature, and his maverick doctor wife, Caryn Dryden, have been headed for divorce for years. But now, with their only child packed off to college, Caryn finally drops the D-word on Gorman, who erupts and retreats to their secluded mountain getaway to cool down and reevaluate his quickly unraveling life. When he returns a few days later, however, he finds his wife very naked and very dead in the hot tub. He immediately calls the authorities; but when the police arrive, Gorman quickly becomes the prime suspect in the bizarre death. Numerous domestic disturbances, an impending divorce, a multimillion-dollar insurance policy, allegations of infidelity, and a neighbor who allegedly saw someone in Gorman's vehicle leave the scene of the crime in the middle of the night all point to the successful writer being a successful murderer as well. Enter Gina Roake, a 47-year-old defense attorney who, emerging from a long mourning period after a crushing personal loss, has decided to "attack life" once again...

Longtime fans of Lescroart's previous novels will notice numerous familiar characters -- homicide inspector Devin Juhle, private investigator Wyatt Hunt, et al. -- playing important secondary roles in this page-turning thriller, which cleverly plants the seeds of a steamy new story line in the novel's conclusion. Paul Goat Allen
Publishers Weekly
Bestseller Lescroart's latest legal thriller falls short of its recent predecessors (The Hunt Club, etc.), after a promising opening. Successful outdoor author Stuart Gorman finds himself the prime suspect in the murder of his wife, Caryn, whose nude body he discovers near their hot tub at their San Francisco home after returning from a weekend at his mountain retreat. Feeling that he has nothing to hide, Stuart is frank about the tensions in his marriage, and those admissions, coupled with a history of domestic disturbance and a huge life insurance payout, prompt a close friend, California state assemblyman Jedd Conley, to recommend a lawyer, even before Stuart's arrest. The attorney, Gina Roake, is eager to sink her teeth into a major case as a way of overcoming a traumatic personal loss, and she soon turns investigator when evidence suggests that something amiss in Caryn's professional life as a doctor may have triggered her death. Unremarkable courtroom scenes and a clumsy gimmick to uncover the real killer make for a less than compelling resolution. (Jan.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
Gina Rourke, a partner at Dismas Hardy's firm, is eager to prove that Stuart Gorman didn't kill his wife, even though he had asked for a divorce and is now on the run. Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
The author's latest legal thriller assigns a starring role to Gina Roake, yet another in his ever-expanding corps of regulars from the San Francisco justice system. Even though she'd just told him she wanted a divorce, and even though he told a traffic cop who tagged him for speeding that he was leaving town so that he wouldn't kill his wife, nature writer Stuart Gorman can't understand why the police regard him as their prime suspect after she's found drowned in their hot tub. It's true that Stuart is the person who found her the next morning, pulled her out and tried to administer CPR to a corpse already stiff with rigor mortis. And it's true that Dr. Caryn Dryden's death makes him a multi-millionaire. But he couldn't possibly have killed Caryn, he points out, because he was up at Tamarack Lake when she died. In that case, Insp. Sgt. Devin Juhle wants to know, how could a neighbor have identified Stuart's SUV pulling into his garage at 11:30 p.m. and leaving again an hour later? It must be a mistake, replies the suspect, who doesn't even want to retain counsel because he's convinced that the best way to clear himself is to play detective. Not until his old college roommate, California Assemblyman Jedd Conley, persuades him that hiring an attorney is no admission of guilt, does he sign on Gina, a partner of franchise linchpin Dismas Hardy (The Second Chair, 2004, etc.). Gina, a former prosecutor, has never defended a murder case before, and apart from the weight of the evidence, Stuart gives every sign of being the most clueless client in history. Lescroart cuts back on his trademark sociological sweep to deliver the mid-grade pleasures of the genre: a slow start, realisticallyrepetitious interrogations, some crackling courtroom scenes and a surprise ending that will catch at least half his readers unawares. Agent: Barney Karpfinger/Karpfinger Agency

Product Details

Penguin Group (USA)
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
6.26(w) x 9.26(h) x 1.31(d)
Age Range:
14 Years

Related Subjects

Meet the Author

John Lescroart is the author of nineteen previous novels, including The Betrayal, The Suspect, The Hunt Club, The Motive, The Second Chair, The First Law, The Oath, The Hearing, and Nothing But the Truth. He lives in Northern California.

Brief Biography

El Macero, California
Date of Birth:
January 14, 1948
Place of Birth:
Houston, Texas
B.A. in English with Honors, UC Berkeley, 1970

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The Suspect 3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 28 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
We have a new Harriet Klausner, her name is Gail Cooke. Wow, you saved us all some big bucks by reading your mini version of the book. Now why would I want to buy this book after reading your crappy version of the story. Aren't you cheating B&N of some sales. This is where B&N should.step in and end this nonsense.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have read all of John Lescroart's books and this by far is the worst. Mr. Lescroart should stick with books featuring Dismas Hardy. If I had not known I was reading a book by John Lescroart, I would never have guessed it. The writing is very inferior to his other books.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A good read
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sweetmarissa More than 1 year ago
This book took me a month to read-it did not hold my attention. The court room dialogue was the best part of the book but I would recommed trying others by the author first.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Since discovering Lescroat's books I've been a loyal reader. I've never been disappointed. Each new book strengthens my loyalty. This one begins with naivete of the innocent believing all is well when telling the truth. But, as always, the investigating mind always has pre-determined bias and investigative directions. In reflection, there were subtle hints missed along the way but that nagging back-of-the-mind uneasiness kept building.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The author really keeps you guessing until the end , most likely you will have missed the real culprit. The author is well established as a great writer and you will enjoy this book.
all-about-daughters More than 1 year ago
Excellent book to read over the weekend. Fun plot but easy to finish and enjoy.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
In his last two novels JL has introduced 'or featured' new main characters with what amounts to cameo appearances of Dismas Hardy. Although the books are well written and the characters are good, I'm drawn to JL's novels for the characters I'm invested in.
Guest More than 1 year ago
First book I have read by this author, always thought he wrote more like John Grisham who is a little intense for me. But this book started out great and continued right to the end. Gina was such a likeable character, I rooted for her from the start. And poor Stuart trying to keep his family together. I wanted him aquitted even if he did do it, Caryn was just too self centered to live. Then there was Kymberly. I wanted to slap some good sense into that girl, who needed discipline in the worst way. The author certainly knew his characters and after the first 2 chapters so did we. This is right up there with my most favorite books and I'll be reading John for a long time.
Guest More than 1 year ago
John Lescroart comes through again with a thriller. I was all ready to read a continuation of the Hunt Club characters. I was happy to see that John developing new characters. I didn't know who the killer was until he was ready to unvail him.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was a great book. It started out good and kept getting better. So many twists and surprises it kept me reading all night long, couldn't put it off. Even though I miss Dis Hardy, I look forward to reading more books about Gina. I'll be recommending The Suspect to my book club members.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The suspect, Stuart, lies so much by omission that I couldn't be sure who the killer was. Lescroart has done a great job of creating a 'seamless transition' between Dismas Hardy,Abe Glitsky and the new lawyer group that it seems much like the same familiar old law firm of the past.The story line is much more intense than I expected.Good job John!