Although covering topics which may be hard to swallow, Justice Gone by N. Lombardi JR is a very important book focusing on prejudice in a court-room style drama.
A homeless veteran is beaten to death by the police. Stormy protests ensue, engulfing a small New Jersey town. Soon after, three cops are gunned down.
A multi-state manhunt is underway for a cop killer on the loose. And Dr. Tessa Thorpe, a veteran’s counsellor, is caught up in the chase when all fingers point to Donald Darfield, an African-American Iraqi war vet.
What will happen when the press and the justice system are baying for revenge?
This has everything I could want in a book
Justice Gone is logically split into three parts, focusing on ‘the incident’, ‘the manhunt’ and ‘the trial’, so it’s really easy to follow along with what is happening. It also allows you, as a reader, to come up with your own conclusion, as you are seeing different points of view and getting attached to specific characters.
It does cover some tough topics – and the author does not shy away from description – including PTSD, war, police brutality and racism. This means it is a tough read at times, but it is very important for the message Lombardi JR is trying to get across, and I reward him for this.
I found myself getting very angry at points because of what was being said, and this is probably the best aspect of the book for me. It’s realistic when it comes to prejudices and the judicial system (obviously different for those in the UK, but is easy to understand and follow), and the topics discussed are widely known worldwide. Justice Gone is horrifically realistic, specifically when the trial is being undertaken; it is so difficult to read some comments, especially if you feel so passionately about a topic.
I wouldn’t necessarily say I got attached to the main characters, but I definitely cared about the ending and their welfare. The epilogue felt slightly rushed, but it depends on what you, personally, take away from the book.
I don’t know whether I’d advertise this a thriller? Perhaps a court-room drama or crime fiction instead?
There’s also a ‘in memory of’, which just hurt my soul and makes the book even more harrowing.
For me, this has everything I could want in a book. It’s got the legal side, which I love having studied law (pre-warning: jargon is frequently used), the horror and crime, a crackin’ plot twist and the way to really make you feel (for me, aggravated at some characters and the system itself). Alongside being a quick read and raising topics which everyone should be aware of, it ticks all the boxes.
Justice Gone, N. Lombardi JR, RRP £12.99 (paperback); Amazon
Publisher: Roundfire Books
Genre: Thriller/ Crime Fiction