Special Circumstances
Incriminating Evidence
Criminal Intent
Final Verdict
Judgment Day
Judgment Day
Perfect Alibi
Felony Murder Rule
The Terrorist Next Door
Final Verdict: Synopsis | Chapter 1 | Chapter 2 | Reviews
Reviews of Final Verdict

Siegel's fourth stand-out legal procedural features likeable law partners Mike Daley and ex-wife Rosie Fernandez working together in their San Francisco firm, Fernandez, Daley and O'Malley. As with the others in the series (Special Circumstances, Incriminating Evidence, Criminal Intent), it's a low-key but pleasantly compelling read.

Skid row resident Leon Walker, successfully represented by Michael and Rosie in a murder case 10 years earlier, reappears and seeks legal help once again. Leon is charged with the murder of Tower Grayson, a Silicon Valley venture capitalist found stabbed to death in a Dumpster behind a liquor store. The firm has several good reasons to turn Walker down. After Rosie's battle with breast cancer, they've sworn off exhaustive murder investigations, and the original Leon Walker case destroyed their marriage. But Michael's unbending moral code compels him to take the job, and Rosie reluctantly goes along. It's a tough case as both the cops and the prosecutors are doing everything in their power, including intimidating witnesses and threatening Michael, to take the accused man down. Leon, who lives in a flophouse and is dying of liver disease, is equally determined to go to his grave an innocent man. Although Grayson's famly and business partners depict him as a pillar of the community, dogged detective work (Michael's ex-cop brother is a PI) turns up a wealth of unsavory evidence attesting to Grayson's many failings, both legal and moral.

Michael's careful deliberations and ethical considerations are a refreshing contrast to the slapdash morality and breakneck speed of most legal thrillers. The lengthy, detailed courtroom scenes are instructive and authentic, the resolution fair, dramatic and satisfying. Michael, Rosie, daughter Grace and friends are characters worth rooting for. The verdict is clear: another win for Siegel. --Publisher's Weekly

Final Verdict, the new legal thriller from Bay Area author Sheldon Siegel, is good fun for anyone familiar with San Francisco and its larger-than-life cast of characters. S.F. law partners MIke Daley and Rosie Fernandez spar like Tracy and Hepburn. Final Verdict maintains a brisk pace, and there's genuine satisfaction when the bad guy gets his comeuppance. More important, there are some new twists to Daley and Fernandez's relationship, and this bodes well for the next installment in the series. . -- San Francisco Chronicle (link)

In this outstanding entry in an always reliable series, former husband and wife defense attorneys Michael Daley and Rosie Fernandez must confront the events that broke them apart. When Leon, a former client whose case caused the marital rift, asks the team to defend him once again as he faces murder charges, Mike and Rosie reluctantly agree, influenced by the fact Leon is now suffering from a deadly kidney disease. All the evidence, albeit
circumstantial, points to Leon as the one who stabbed a wealthy venture capitalist. Enlisting the help of their cadre of colorful supporting characters, Mike and Rosie attempt to find out what really happened, employing their usual investigative and courtroom acumen in the process. As always, Siegel makes the most of Mike's cunningly cautious cross-examination technique. An ending that's full of surprises--both professional and personal--provides the perfect finale to a supremely entertaining legal thriller. --Booklist

About a decade ago, lawyers Michael Daley and Rosie Fernandez triumphantly represented bum Leon Walker in a murder trial. Leon returns needing legal assistance from his attorneys as he is charged with the stabbing killing of
Silicon Valley venture capitalist Tower Grayson. The duo knows they must reject this case and all murder cases as Rosie recovers from breast cancer. Besides obtaining an acquittal in the first case, the marriage between the
two lawyers ended. Perhaps it is the code of an ex-priest, but Michael, over his own judgment that reminds him of the mental and physical price these representations mean, accepts the job. The prosecution side uses every
weapon in their arsenal including abuse of power through intimidation of witnesses and the defense to win. Encouraged by their client's obsession to prove his innocence before he dies from a liver ailment, Michael and Rose with the professional help of his brother a private eye type go all out in their defense, but the other side has more in its arsenal to hide the truth.

The verdict on Sheldon Siegel is that few if any of today's writers provide a better legal thriller. His latest tale contains a strong story line with incredibly realistic and compelling courtroom scenes that last for more than a paragraph or two. Fans will root for the defense team whose courageous client sets the tone and feel horrified at the “legal” excesses of the prosecution side. FINAL VERDICT is great novel that sub-genre fans will enjoy immensely, but also will think of the song The Spy Who Loved Me upon finishing the book because baby Mr. Siegel is the best. - Harriet Klausner, Blether's Book Reviews

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