ISBN 10: 0062259407 / ISBN 13: 9780062259400
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In this sophisticated thriller, lawyer Jay Porter, hero of Attica Locke?s bestseller Black Water Rising, returns to fight one last case, only to become embroiled once again in a dangerous game of shadowy politics and a witness to how far those in power are willing to go to win.

Fifteen years after the events of Black Water Rising, Jay Porter is struggling to cope with catastrophic changes in his personal life and the disintegration of his environmental law practice. His victory against Cole Oil is still the crown jewel of his career, even if he hasn?t yet seen a dime thanks to appeals. But time has taken its toll. Tired and restless, he?s ready to quit.

When a girl goes missing on Election Night, 1996, in the neighborhood of Pleasantville?a hamlet for upwardly mobile blacks on the north side of Houston?Jay, a single father, is deeply disturbed. He?s been representing Pleasantville in the wake of a chemical fire, and the case is dragging on, raising doubts about his ability.

The missing girl was a volunteer for one of the local mayoral candidates, and her disappearance complicates an already heated campaign. When the nephew of one of the candidates, a Pleasantville local, is arrested, Jay reluctantly finds himself serving as a defense attorney. With a man?s life and his own reputation on the line, Jay is about to try his first murder in a case that will also put an electoral process on trial, exposing the dark side of power and those determined to keep it.


Jay Porter, the hero of the critically acclaimed bestseller Black Water Rising, becomes embroiled in a toxic case involving politics, corruption, and murder in this electrifying and atmospheric tale from Attica Locke, a writer "akin to George Pelecanos or Dennis Lehane" (New York Times).

Fifteen years after his career-defining case against Cole Oil, Jay Porter is broke and tired. That victory might have won the environmental lawyer fame, but thanks to a string of appeals, he hasn't seen a dime. His latest case?representing Pleasantville in the wake of a chemical fire?is dragging on, shaking his confidence and raising doubts about him within this upwardly mobile black community on Houston's north side. Though Jay still believes in doing what's right, he is done fighting other people's battles. Once he has his piece of the settlement, the single father is going to devote himself to what matters most?his children.

His plans are abruptly derailed when a female campaign volunteer vanishes on the night of Houston's mayoral election, throwing an already contentious campaign into chaos. The accused is none other than the nephew and campaign manager of one of the leading candidates?a scion of a prominent Houston family headed by the formidable Sam Hathorne. Despite all the signs suggesting that his client is guilty?and his own misgivings?Jay can't refuse when a man as wealthy and connected as Sam asks him to head up the defense. Not if he wants that new life with his kids. But he has to win.

Plunging into a shadowy world of ambitious enemies and treacherous allies armed with money, lies, and secrets, Jay reluctantly takes on his first murder trial?a case that will put him and his client, and an entire political process, on trial.

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