Known for his critically acclaimed contemporary thrillers, New York Times bestselling author Phillip Margolin explores intriguing new territory in Worthy Brown's Daughter, a compelling historical drama, set in nineteenth-century Oregon, that combines a heartbreaking story of slavery and murder with classic Margolin plot twists.
One of a handful of lawyers in the new state of Oregon, recently widowed Matthew Penny agrees to help Worthy Brown, a newly freed slave, rescue his fifteen year old daughter, Roxanne, from their former master, a powerful Portland lawyer. Worthy's lawsuit sets in motion events that lead to Worthy's arrest for murder and create an agonizing moral dilemma that could send either Worthy or Matthew to the hangman.
At the same time, hanging judge Jed Tyler, a powerful politician with a barren personal life, becomes infatuated with a beautiful gold-digger who is scheming to murder Benjamin Gillette, Oregon's wealthiest businessman. When Gillette appears to die from natural causes, Sharon Hill produces a forged contract of marriage and Tyler must decide if he will sacrifice his reputation to defend that of the woman who inspired his irrational obsession.
At Worthy's trial, Matthew saves Worthy by producing a stunning courtroom surprise and his attempt to stop the deadly fortune hunter ends in a violent climax.
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"On the courtroom floor, where Margolin is clearly at home, the stock characters adopt roles, albeit briefly, in a satisfying, white-knuckle climax." - Publishers Weekly
"The Old West comes alive in heart-wrenching, violent, and wicked racist color... Legal thriller and western fans will stay with it to the last page... Margolin's novel offers a compelling portrait of small town justice done right." - Booklist
"With plenty of action and short chapters, this historical legal thriller is a quick read. Some of the conversation seems stilted and contrived, and certain plotlines are too easily and quickly tied up." - Library Journal
"Margolin's dialogue is sometimes affected, sometimes faintly anachronistic, but his scene-setting, knowledge of the frontier and relating of the hard task of the law make for an appealing read that, the author says, took 30 years to write. " - Kirkus
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Phillip Margolin grew up in New York City and Levittown, New York. In 1965, he graduated from The American University in Washington, D.C. with a Bachelor's Degree in Government. From 1965 to 1967, he was a Peace Corps volunteer in Liberia, West Africa. In 1970, he graduated from New York University School of Law. During his last two years in law school he went at night and worked his way through by teaching junior high school in the South Bronx in New York City. His first job after law school was a clerkship with Herbert M. Schwab, the Chief Judge of the Oregon Court of Appeals. From 1972 until 1996, Margolin was in private practice in Portland, Oregon, specializing in criminal defense at the trial and appellate levels. As an appellate attorney he has appeared before the ...
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