by R.A. Forster
Published by Pinnacle Books
Kensington Publishing Corporation
1998, 384 pages
Buy it online
Lauren Kingsley, assigned as the lead prosecuting attorney for the hottest case to hit Los Angeles in years, believes her hard work in the U.S. Attorney's Office has finally paid off. Lauren doesn't realize she is simply a pawn in a political game of chess.
Following a rash of bombings across the country, the IRS complex in downtown L. A. becomes the next target. Innocent people die, and the elusive Independent Militia is blamed.
The police luck-out with eyewitnesses, physical evidence, and the quick arrest of two Militiamen. The U.S. Attorney's Office should look like demigods. Except for one small problem.
The Fourth Amendment clearly guards against unreasonable search and seizure, but the arresting officer fails to follow standard police procedures. The public doesn't care about insignificant details like maintaining individuals' rights: they want the bombings stopped and the guilty parties brought to justice.
The judge assigned to the case is a personal friend of Lauren's. Seizing this opportunity, the U.S. Attorney assigns her as the lead prosecutor in the hopes that Lauren's personal relationship with the Judge will sway him to allow the evidence to stand. But Judge Wilson Caufield is a man of the law. In his courtroom, there is no venue or deference shown the lawyers pleading their cases before him.
While Lauren struggles to build a case, FBI agent Eli Warner begins to investigate Judge Caufield. During his investigation, Eli stumbles across something that raises his suspicions. Does the esteemed Judge have skeletons in his family closet?
In typical R. A. Forster fashion, The Mentor hooks the reader on page one and doesn't release them until the last word is devoured. In an intense roller coaster ride, Ms. Forster guides the reader through dark alleys and stately courtrooms to discover the fine line between right and wrong, good and evil, and how easily it can be erased.
As the lives of her characters unfold, the reader has the pleasure of watching a master storyteller weave her powerful tale. In this deadly game, as in life, nothing is as it seems. Instead, reality prevails, with its multifaceted dips and curves in the roadway of life.
The Mentor ensures Ms. Forster's place as one of today's best writers of legal thrillers. With a cast of characters as real as your own next door neighbors and an easily identifiable story, the book is impossible to put down.
Review by Robin Nobles