I enjoyed Graham Moore's last book Last Days of Night. And the author impressively won an Oscar for the screenplay of The Imitation Game making a memorable acceptance speech (worth googling.) With such a good track record, I was anxious to read The Holdout. I liked this book very much. It’s a smart legal thriller that I couldn’t put down.
In 2009, Bobby Nock is on trial for the murder of Jessica Silver. Bobby was the 15 year old girl’s teacher. Although her body was never found, there is compelling evidence that point to Bobby’s guilt. After a long, sensational trial, Nock is found not guilty, primarily because juror Maya Seale, the only holdout, is able to convince all the jurors to set him free.
Ten years later, Maya is now a successful trial attorney. A true crime docuseries is being made to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the trial. While Maya initially refuses to be part of the show, the promise of new evidence that one of the other jurors claims he’s uncovered proving that Nock was indeed the killer, was going to be revealed. The former juror, however, ends up getting murdered and the #1 suspect is Maya.
The book moves back and forth between 2009 and the present. The search for the truth of what happened to Jessica as well as the newly murdered former juror makes for a clever mystery and gives an interesting look into the dynamics of juries and the media’s fascination with murder trials. The Holdout is in development to be made into a series for Hulu. I hope this happens as this book is perfectly suited for television.
Rated 4 out of 5 stars.
Thriller / Mystery.
Publication Date: February 18, 2020.
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