Cover image for A defense for the dead
A defense for the dead
Fredrickson, Michael.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Forge, [2004]

Physical Description:
320 pages ; 25 cm
General Note:
"A Tom Doherty Associates book."
Geographic Term:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
FICTION Adult Fiction Mystery/Suspense
FICTION Adult Fiction Central Closed Stacks
FICTION Adult Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



The murderer is known as Van Gogh. Leaving a bloody trail of bodies up and down the east coast, every one of the serial killer's targets receives his gruesome signature: the removal of the victim's right ear. After ten such bodies, the FBI tracks him down and takes him out, putting an end to an horrific mystery. For Boston attorney Jimmy Morrissey, however, Van Gogh's death is only the beginning.Jimmy Morrissey has problems of his own. His wife has cancer, his practice is floundering, and his receptionist is trying to use him as his own personal bodyguard. Things only get worse when two FBI agents let him in on a chilling piece of evidence found in Van Gogh's apartment: abeautiful woman's headshot, with Morrisey's name and address on the back.It isn't tool long before Morrissey realizes that he's been sent a message from beyond thegrave. The tightly wrapped Van Gogh case begins to unravel with every new detail Jimmy uncovers, which could mean that a murderer is still at large. But finding out the truth means taking on a client that technically doesn't exist, living Jimmy Morrissey as Defense for the Dead.

Author Notes

Michael Fredrickson is a former Rhodes Scholar, he is general counsel to the Massachusetts agency that prosecutes attorneys for legal wrongdoing. He lives with his wife and son in a suburb of Boston

Reviews 1

Booklist Review

Massachusetts lawyer Jimmy Morrisey has no business taking on work that won't pay, considering his solo practice is at a crawl and his wife is battling cancer. But when two FBI agents darken his door, the news they deliver piques his curiosity--and for good reason. Having just arrested the serial murderer known as Van Gogh (named for his habit of lopping off the victim's right ear), the feds uncovered in the perp's residence a photo of a woman with Jimmy's home and work address on the back. Jimmy doesn't know William Wolff (aka Van Gogh), nor does he know the woman in the photo. The agents seem content to let this loose end dangle, but Jimmy wants answers. His meddling uncovers disturbing facts that make him the target of another killer. Jimmy makes a fine hero in the modern, low-key style--flawed, funny, and likable. This is Fredrickson's third thriller, all with different attorney protagonists. Let's hope Jimmy breaks the pattern and comes back again. --Mary Frances Wilkens Copyright 2004 Booklist

Table of Contents

1. The Sheep Liep. 13
2. Brandy Pete'sp. 25
3. Cherchez la Femmep. 35
4. Nobody's Perfectp. 47
5. The Drooping Lizardp. 59
6. Nickel Epiphaniesp. 73
7. Your Mother's Maiden Namep. 89
8. Mouthfulp. 99
9. Stockp. 109
10. The Grain Exchangep. 125
11. There Are No Coincidencesp. 131
12. Body by Fisherp. 137
13. St. Theresa-Lutheranp. 143
14. Living with a Strangerp. 147
15. Incoming!p. 159
16. Vidi, Vici, Venip. 165
17. Dolphins and Ashesp. 175
18. Mine Eyes ...p. 193
19. The Tickerp. 199
20. Light Typingp. 205
21. The Law Is Not an Assp. 217
22. Tasselsp. 221
23. Fetishp. 233
24. The Divine Planp. 239
25. All Earsp. 253
26. The Canaryp. 261
27. The Play's the Thing ...p. 265
28. More Than You Can Handlep. 277
29. My Herop. 285
30. Vice Versap. 289
31. Sandwich Boardp. 299
32. Post-itp. 303
33. Honest Johnp. 307
34. The Next Right Thingp. 311
Afterwordp. 319