Foreword Review — May / June 2002
Mystery, intrigue, and murder all occur at the University of Chicago Law School, where first-year student Grayson Bullock finds himself enveloped by the treacherous and secretive workings of the elite legal journal, the Law Review. Only the brightest of students enter law school at the University of Chicago, and only those whose grades are at the top of their class are selected for the journal. From that springboard powerful careers are launched, and Grayson is determined to be selected for the prestigious organization.
Almost immediately upon his arrival at the school, Grayson meets the Law Review editor, Miles Vanderlyden (the son of a powerful judge) and Aris Boyd, wealthy and beautiful, who is also on the executive board. Aris makes a charismatic first impression, and as Grayson falls in love with her, he is warned by a friend that she is not to be trusted. When a student and then Miles become victims of murder, Grayson starts to wonder if someone on the executive board is behind the deaths. He makes his thoughts known to Aris, and then discovers that she and another board member seemed to conspire for Grayson to have a fatal “accident.”
As Grayson strives to sort out conflicting loyalties, friendships, and emotions, he must ultimately decide whether his promising career is worth the jealousies, blackmail, and dangers brought on by obsession with the Law Review.
The author is an attorney who was a member of the Law Review at the University of Chicago Law School, the backdrop of his novel. His intimate knowledge of the school and its journal imbue the book with stark realism. For example, the school is surrounded by a seedy neighborhood, which provides an easy scapegoat on which to blame crimes that occur at the school, and may enable the true murderer to escape detection.
The book’s plot flows smoothly, and the reader is left with the impression that law students are every bit as complicated and manipulative as full-fledged attorneys. As the characters’ multifaceted layers are revealed, the author keeps the reader guessing as to their motives and opportunities.
Readers who enjoy novels by Scott Throw and John Grisham should find The Law Review a worthy addition to their bookshelves.