All In The (Conflicts) Family


Brian Faughnan on Ethics “All in the (Conflicts) Family” in the Memphis Lawyer, pages 28-29. See link below.

I have a lot of favorite books so for me to characterize something as being one of my favorite books is not really all that discerning a designation.  Having made that disclaimer, one of my favorite books is on that came out about 15 years ago from an author billed, at the time, by many as the next John Grisham  –  Brad Meltzer. That book is Dead Even, Meltzer’s second novel. My fondness for it, on reflection, certainly isn’t rooted in how well-written it was (though my memory is that it was better written than Grisham’s stuff) but flows from how much I enjoyed the premise.

The premise: two lawyer protagonists, a husband (a criminal defense lawyer) and wife (a prosecutor), who end up pitted against each other on a particular criminal case as a result of nefarious external forces. Each was being pressured by these outside forces to make sure that they won the case. “Pressured” being a bit of an understatement. To the extent the statute of repose on the offense of spoiling books exceeds 15 years, I can still elaborate without really spoiling by saying that the pressure brought to bear included being threatened with the death of their spouse if they failed to win. And, of course, to insure that neither lawyer could convince the other to simply tank the case (or otherwise figure out that the threats were going in both directions) by talking with each other about what was going on, each was also threatened that saying anything about what was up to their spouse would get their spouse killed.

See the whole article in the Memphis Lawyer at (pages 28-29)

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