Cover image for Blood brothers
Blood brothers
Wachtler, Sol.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Beverly Hills, CA : New Millennium Press, [2003]

Physical Description:
381 pages ; 24 cm
Format :


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X Adult Fiction Central Closed Stacks
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This explosive novel is co-written by two men very familiar with the legal system. Sol Wachtler, former Chief Judge of the State of New York, and David Gould, a former Assistant United States Attorney, have joined forces to write a legal thriller with deeper meaning. When Luke's father is confronted with business reverses, he and his family are forced to leave Augusta. Luke goes on to Princeton and Harvard Law School, finally establishing himself as a partner in a prestigious Wall Street law firm. T.C. remains in Georgia and becomes enveloped in the miasma of bigotry. As a Klansman, he is arrested for setting fire to a synagogue. He serves a brief prison sentence, only to be charged with murder forty years later for the alleged lynching of a black man--a man who was torched in a Georgia swamp forty years ago. When he learns that his "blood brother" has been arrested, Luke returns to Augusta to defend him. He and his co-counsel, Payton Simpkins, a brilliant young black attorney from Augusta, combine their talent and intellect in a trial which is filled with suspense and surprises. Readers will be enthralled as they explore the constant struggle between what is the "real" truth and what is the "best" truth. Luke ultimately must make some tough decisions, and, in the end, compels the reader to do the same.

Reviews 1

Publisher's Weekly Review

The jury verdict is the usual culmination of most legal thrillers; not so in this absorbing, thoughtful deliberation from Wachtler (After the Madness: A Judge's Own Prison Memoir), a former chief judge of New York State, and Gould, a former assistant United States attorney. In late 1950s Augusta, Ga., 15-year-old Luke Lipton befriends sullen, hulking T.C. Simmons. As one of the town's few Jewish teens, Luke feels an outcast kinship with alienated, dirt-poor T.C. Forty years later, Luke has become an exalted Wall Street lawyer, and T.C. has done jail time for torching a synagogue. When Luke learns that T.C. has been accused of the brutal killing of a black man, Aaron Boddie, he quits his job and returns to Georgia to defend his old friend. Everyone is intent on getting the death penalty for T.C., including Mayor Will Morgan, who testifies he saw T.C. commit the crime, though T.C. swears it was Will who dragged Boddie into a swamp and set him on fire. Luke's faith in his friend wavers, is restored and dashed again as the twisted story is retold both in court and out. But the authors are concerned more with questions of truth, myth and justice than with a simple solution to the crime, and after the verdict is delivered, it is personal morality that goes on trial, with Luke forced to make an almost impossible decision that will drastically change the lives of everyone concerned. Many readers, after becoming increasingly invested in this cast of compelling characters, will be frustrated at the authors' open-ended conclusion, while others will find the ambiguity bold and thought provoking. (Sept.) Forecast: Legal thriller readers will find the insider courtroom information fascinating and the story engrossing (and may be intrigued by Wachtler's tabloid past he was arrested in 1992 for harassing former lover Joy Silverman), but the problematic ending may keep this one from scoring big. The publishing company is betting otherwise with a hefty first printing and fulsome author endorsements by Richard North Patterson, Nelson DeMille and that jacket perennial, Larry King. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved