Monday, May 11, 2015

The Color of Justice by Ace Collins

Justice, Mississippi, is a town divided. White and black. Rich and poor. Rule makers and rule breakers. Right or wrong, everyone assumes their place behind a fragile fa├žade that is about to crumble.  When attorney Coop Lindsay agrees to defend a black man accused of murdering a white teenager, the bribes and death threats don’t intimidate him. As he prepares for the case of a lifetime, the young lawyer knows it’s the verdict that poses the real threat—innocent or guilty, because of his stand Coop is no longer welcome in Justice. As he follows his conscience, he wonders just how far some people will go to make sure he doesn’t finish his job?

To some, the result of the trial still feels like a fresh wound even fifty years later, when Coop’s grandson arrives in Justice seeking answers to the questions unresolved by the trial that changed his family’s legacy. When a new case is presented, again pitting white against black, this third generation Lindsay may have the opportunity he needs to right the wrongs of the past. 
But hate destroys everything it touches, and the Lindsay family will not escape unscathed.

Who has 36 (at least) novels to their credit and still has a Christy Award Finalist for 2015?  Ace Collins, that’s who.  And if you haven’t read anything buy this Ace yet, then shame on you.  Ace is, in my honest opinion, one of the greatest, if not THE greatest, author in the legal thriller genre today.

The setting is Deep South in the summer of 1964.  Racial division is alive and well, even if it’s rarely discussed out loud.  Having moved back to the town he grew up in to care for his mother, Attorney Coop Lindsay has thrown out his shingle in town.  What most locals accepts as an open and shut murder case of a white girl by a colored young man, turns into anything but when Coop agrees to represent the young man.  Not only is he committing career suicide, but he is placing himself and his family directly in harm’s way.  As the evidence, or lack of it, continues to mount, Coop is finally victorious in the courtroom, but at what cost.  Upon celebrating, Coop and the young man are never to be seen again.  Flash forward now to 2014 and the town has completed an about face.  The town is seemingly integrated now, but the bigotry from some of the past continues to shine.  Coop’s grandson visits the town upon reading some journals of his grandfather’s and seeks to find out what really happened to his grandfather.  The town is up in arms again, this time though, a young colored man has been killed by the white grandson of a very prominent citizen, one that played a major role in the last case of his grandfather’s.  Will justice be found again? Can Coop undercover what really happened to his grandfather?  Will the bigotry in town every go away?  You will be found guilty if you don’t run now and BUY THIS BOOK!!

The thing that I enjoy most about reading stories by Ace Collins is how believable his characters are and how easy it is to take an interest in their well-being.  This story presents a very tough subject during a tough time, but Ace handles it perfectly, even to the point of making me, the reader, pause to reflect what my prejudices look like.  The pace of this book is very fast, if you aren’t in for a story that takes off from the beginning and leaves you breathless, not knowing when to catch your breath, then I wouldn’t recommend this book.  I will admit that I thought I knew whodunit pretty early on, but I was wrong.  And not only was I wrong, I didn’t even see that there was an entire second half of this story to tell.  He makes every piece of this book come together realistically, that’s the kind of attention to detail that I’ve come to appreciate when I sit down and crack open a new Ace Collins novel.

Is this a "Man’s Book"?   This is not a “man’s book” or a “woman’s book”.  This is a book that must be read and will be enjoyed by everyone.  This is a book that will get you thinking and get you talking and one that will definitely keep you up as you try to finish the book.  If I could only have one legal genre author in my bookcase, it would definitely be a novel by Ace Collins.


Citing his Arkansas heritage, Christy finalist Ace Collins defines himself as a storyteller. In that capacity, Ace Collins has authored more than seventy books for 25 different publishers that have sold more than 2.5 million copies. His catalog includes novels, biographies, children’s works as well as books on history, culture and faith. He has also been the featured speaker at the National Archives Distinguished Lecture Series, hosted a network television special and does college basketball play-by-play


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