Thursday, August 12, 2010

Book #91: Innocent

InnocentTitle: Innocent
Author: Scott Turow

More than twenty years have passed since Rusty Sabich's trial for the murder of Carolyn Polhemus ended with him getting freedom... of a sort. For the last twenty years, he's lived with the knowledge that his wife, Barbara, was both mentally unstable and capable of murder. And for the last twenty years, Sabich has advanced his career (he's now a judge, running for State Supreme Court, or something of that ilk), while Tommy Molto has worked to redeem himself after his thrashing during the first trial. Rusty's also done a good job of staying on the straight and narrow with other women, because the only time he had an affair things ended very badly.

Eventually Rusty finds himself in the arms and bed of Anna Vostic, his law clerk. After a few months, his responsibility for Barbara outweighs his passion for Anna, but keeping a secret from Barbara proves as impossible in 2007 as it was in 1987, and he soon finds himself on trial for murder once more, facing Tommy Molto again as his prosecutor.

While Presumed Innocent was a good whodunit, with impressive courtroom scenes, Innocent feels more domestic in nature. Turow spends significant amounts of time exploring complicated marriages, relationships between parents and children, remote older men, and finding love late in life (Tommy Molto is married! With babies!) In that sense, I enjoyed the book more. While the mystery, given the events of the previous book, wasn't all that mysterious, probing the whys of the mystery gives readers a lot to think about.

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