October debut novel #2 is brought to you by veteran trial lawyer Paul Batista, whose legal thriller Death's Witness reads like an early Grisham novel. When lawyer Tom Perini, a former Heisman Trophy winner, is found murdered in Central Park, the investigation stalls early on, and Perini's widow, Julie, is left with the unsettled feeling that something is being covered up. With just a bit of preliminary sniffing around, Julie quickly realizes that her husband was not the lily-white soul mate and father that he seemed to be. In fact, he was funneling huge amounts of money through a secret bank account, the latest deposit upwards of $100 million! When the cops show up to impound all of Tom's paper and computer files, Julie grudgingly complies. Unbeknownst to the law, however, she has been diligently copying everything for later perusal. That said, she can only sift through the data if she survives, and nefarious forces on both sides of the law seem to have it in for her . . . unless she can lead them to the missing millions.
Death's Witness is an outstanding debut novel. Like L.A. Rex, it was penned by someone from the trenches, with an insider's knowledge of how the system works, and more importantly, how to game said system for one's own ends.