Five Star, Feb 2008, $25.95
In Syracuse, New York personal injury lawyer Nicky Rigopoulos wants no problem cases interfering with his efforts to become a judge; thus he settles for less than his clients deserve when even his partner Lottie Magnarella argues with him that he behaves unethically. Although married to the trophy wife that a hot shot attorney wannabe judge needs, Nicky is a first class womanizer to include at one time Lottie. His spouse knows what he is and does not mind as long as he keeps her in a luxurious lifestyle as she is a man-eater.
Nicky’s chances of landing on the bench sink totally when Lottie is found dead; he is the prime suspect as just a few hours earlier they had a public brouhaha over his settling a case for her. Not trusting cops or lawyers as he knows both groups too well, Nicky investigates only to have the police believe he also killed his spouse and one of his lovers.
Once you get past the amateur sleuth paradox compounded in this case by the protagonist having strong connections and money, DARK LADY is a terrific whodunit. The story line is fast-paced as Nicky struggles to stay one step ahead of the police while feeling one step behind the culprit. Adding to the fun is that the lead character is the epitome of sleazy lawyer so that readers have mixed feelings as he deserves the worse though he is innocent.