A compelling exploration of one of society’s most vexing legal issues, written and read by bestselling author Scott Turow
Scott Turow is known to millions as the author of peerless novels about the troubling regions of experience where law and reality intersect. In “real life,” as a respected criminal lawyer, he has been involved with the death penalty for more than a decade, including successfully representing two different men convicted in death-penalty prosecutions. In this vivid account of how his views on the death penalty have evolved, Turow describes his own experiences with capital punishment from his days as an impassioned young prosecutor to his recent service on the Illinois commission that investigated the administration of the death penalty and influenced Governor George Ryan’s unprecedented commutation of the sentences of 164 death row inmates on his last day in office.
This gripping, clear-sighted, necessary examination of the principles, the personalities, and the politics of a fundamental dilemma of our democracy has all the drama and intellectual substance of Turow’s celebrated fiction.
|Product dimensions:||5.20(w) x 5.80(h) x 0.80(d)|
About the Author
Scott Turow is the world-famous author of six bestselling novels about the law, from Presumed Innocent (1987) to Reversible Errors (2002), which centers on a death-penalty case. He lives with his family outside Chicago, where he is a partner in the firm of Sonnenschein, Nath & Rosenthal.
Date of Birth:April 12, 1949
Place of Birth:Chicago, Illinois
Education:B.A. in English, Amherst College, 1970; M.A., Stanford University, 1974; J.D., Harvard University, 1978
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Legal thriller author Scott Turow served as a former federal prosecutor, a death penalty appellate lawyer, and on former Illinois Governor Ryan's Commission on Capital Punishment. Mr. Turow describes his change in attitude towards the death penalty. In this non-fiction book, the author says much of his reflections came about mostly based on his work with the commission. Their findings shocked the country, but not as much as Ryan¿s commutations of sentencing that included a convicted child serial killer. ULTIMATE PUNISHMENT goes deep into the psychology and philosophy behind capital punishment. However, much of the writing is devoted to the shock of what was found in the Illinois system. Everyone including the most hard nosed members of the commission were stunned to learn how arbitrary the process actually is. Logic is ignored as in many cases the victims¿ rights overwhelmed the rights of the defendant (usually the first available suspect). As a most interesting postscript, no other governor has followed Mr. Ryan¿s lead preferring to bury their heads in the sand. It is politically easier to follow the successful path of then Governor Bush of Texas that nothing is wrong. This includes the current 'get tough on killers' politics of Ryan¿s replacement. Whether you support the ULTIMATE PUNISHMENT or not, this book is worth reading. Mr. Turow raises a fundamental issue of a failed inconsistent system fed fodder by leaders acting like the mother in the Glass Menagerie by preferring to politically pretend all is well in the world. Harriet Klausner