Abi Silver had years of experience in the courtroom before writing novels. Her latest legal thriller, The Midas Game, was published in June this year and focuses on a case where the death of a doctor causes suspicion to fall on a local gamer who makes a living from violent video games. If you’re looking for some more gripping legal battles, Silver lists her top five recommendations here.
1 To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Still tops my list, 60 years after publication. Narrated by six-year-old Scout Finch, it’s the story of her lawyer father Atticus’s defence of a young black man accused of rape in Alabama during the Great Depression. Rich in period detail, it’s a story of courage, loss of innocence and so much more.
2 Thirteen by Steve Cavanagh
In this ingenious, twisty novel lawyer Eddie Flynn defends a Hollywood star on trial for murdering his wife but (not a spoiler) the perpetrator is a serial killer whose raison d’être is to find his way on to the jury. Quite brilliant.
3 Marked for Death by Tony Kent
Part courtroom drama, part serial killer thriller, this gripping, high-octane story features a lawyer with a past, Michael Devlin, teamed up with reporter Sarah Truman to defend a man accused of a gruesome murder. So tense and atmospheric I couldn’t put it down.
4 You Don’t Know Me by Imran Mahmood
Totally original. A young man on trial for murder dispenses with his lawyer and tells his story, in his own words – the whole truth. Bold, compelling and eye-opening.
5 A Time to Kill by John Grisham
Fabulous characterisation and oodles of tension in this Mississippi-based story of an inexperienced lawyer, Jake Brigance, defending a father who gunned down the men who raped his 10-year-old daughter. The master at work.