Turning Angel marks the long-awaited return of Penn Cage, the lawyer
hero of The Quiet Game, and introduces Drew Elliott, the highly
respected doctor who saved Penn's life in a hiking accident when they were
boys. As two of the most prominent citizens of Natchez, Drew and Penn sit on
the school board of their alma mater, St. Stephen's Prep. When the nude body
of a young female student is found near the Mississippi River, the entire
community is shocked -- but no one more than Penn, who discovers that his
best friend was entangled in a passionate relationship with the girl and may
be accused of her murder.
On the surface, Kate Townsend seems the most unlikely murder victim
imaginable. A star student and athlete, she'd been accepted to Harvard and
carried the hope and pride of the town on her shoulders. But like her school
and her town, Kate also had a secret life -- one about which her adult lover
knew little. When Drew begs Penn to defend him, Penn allows his sense of
obligation to override his instinct and agrees. Yet before he can begin,
both men are drawn into a dangerous web of blackmail and violence. Drew
reacts like anything but an innocent man, and Penn finds himself doubting
his friend's motives and searching for a path out of harm's way.
More dangerous yet is Shad Johnson, the black district attorney whose
dream is to send a rich white man to death row in Mississippi. At Shad's
order, Drew is jailed, the police cease hunting Kate's killer, and Penn
realizes that only by finding Kate's murderer himself can he save his
With his daughter's babysitter as his guide, Penn penetrates the secret
world of St. Stephen's, a place that parents never see, where reality veers
so radically from appearance that Penn risks losing his own moral compass.
St. Stephen's is a dark mirror of the adult world, one populated by
steroid-crazed jocks, girls desperate for attention, jaded teens flirting
with nihilism, and hidden among them all -- one true psychopath. It is
Penn's journey into the heart of his alma mater that gives Turning Angel
its hypnotic power, for on that journey he finds that the intersection of
the adult and nearly adult worlds is a dangerous place indeed. By the time
Penn arrives at the shattering truth behind Kate Townsend's death, his quiet
Southern town will never be the same.
According to his website, Iles has got quite a lot of flak for Turning Angel, which has proved more controversial than any of his other books. One source of controversy lies in Iles's portrayal of the female victim as having drawn violence on herself by making bad decisions. In defense of his book Iles says, "Any cop can tell you that some victims are at least partly to blame for the crimes that befall them. We all have a responsibility to use our common sense to protect ourselves, even high school boys and girls." (Reviewed by BookBrowse Review Team).
The Washington Post - Patrick Anderson
All this is lurid in the extreme and, in Iles's hands, entirely
gripping, but there is more to Turning Angel than sex and
scandal. Iles offers an insider's heartfelt picture of a Southern town
that is dying because of lousy schools, a failing economy and racial
tensions - and, again, there is no reason to think Natchez is unique.
Iles populates this town with characters who are all too real and
makes clear that its privileged young people no longer live isolated
lives .. this is a powerful piece of popular fiction.
Booklist - David Pitt
Iles has become an A-list thriller writer over the years, and anything with his name on it can be counted on to draw a crowd. Call this one a well-written misfire.
Another parboiled offering from the poster boy of southern gothic thrillers... Lively scenes pop up here and there, but 500-plus pages will transmogrify most thrillers into a relentless march of predictable events.
Library Journal - Thomas L Kilpatrick
This book will certainly please fans of Iles's earlier novels, while its thrill-a-minute pace and frequent plot twists are certain to appeal to new readers.
Starred Review. The job of great fiction is to entertain, elucidate and educate while keeping readers nailed to their chairs; this does all of that brilliantly.
Recent Reader Reviews
Rated of 5
by Beverly Turning Angel This was one of his best books. And I have read them all. I read this book in 2 days I could not put it down if you had not read this book you really need to it is great!
Rated of 5
by Gina Greg Isles is Great I am an advid reader of suspense novels. I discovered Greg Iles several years ago. His novels keep me on the edge of my seat. You see real-life scenarios, and that makes the books even more believable. Greg Isles Rocks!
Rated of 5
by Deborah Fast- Paced Thriller I've not read Greg Iles before. This book drew me in early and kept me on the edge of my seat for the 48 hours it took me to finish it. Over the top, but what a great ride. I highly recommend this book as a fast-paced, guilty pleasure. Nothing... Read More
Greg Iles was
born in Germany in 1960, where
his father ran the US Embassy
Medical Clinic during the height
of the Cold War. He spent his
youth in Natchez, Mississippi,
and graduated from the
University of Mississippi in
1983; followed by several years
playing music in the band
The year after he was married,
he gigged on the road for 50
weeks out of 52, and realized
that this lifestyle was simply
not sustainable with a
family. He quit the band and
began working eighteen hours a
day on his first novel,
Spandau Phoenix, a thriller
about Nazi war criminal Rudolf
When Greg sold this manuscript,
he left the music business to
complete the book. Spandau...
Investigating the brutal murder of a hotshot journalist, Samantha Kincaid finds herself caught in the middle of an increasingly personal - and potentially dangerous - struggle between Portland's police and the DA's office.
A Man Called Intrepid author dies aged 89(Dec 03 2013) William Stevenson, a journalist and author who drew on his close ties with intelligence sources to write two best-selling books in the 1970s, A Man Called...