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Death Qualified by Kate Wilhelm

Death Qualified (1991)

by Kate Wilhelm

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Barbara Holloway Novels (1)

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3691344,713 (3.55)24



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» See also 24 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 13 (next | show all)
This was my first book by Wilhelm. I was looking for her early SF books but decided to try one of her Thriller/Mystery/Court-Room-Drama books. Though she started in the SF pulps her real claim to fame is in this genera. She wrote many of these with great success and won several awards.

The book is good and is the first, of more then a dozen, featuring the same protagonist. Like many female authors she is writing for women. This can be negative for many male readers unless the writing is good. I think the book is well written. I enjoy a good court room drama but this story was a bit lame. Reading reviews of her later works assure me she only got better with time. ( )
  ikeman100 | Jun 29, 2019 |
I thought I'd enjoy this one more than I did, but it steered too close to sci-fi for me. I suppose every novel is in some sense a sci-fi or fantasy (there never was a Mr. Darcy, after all) but rather than positing "what if so-and-so killed so-and-so" (the typical mystery postulation) it ventured much, much further into sci-fi territory, creating an uncomfortable (for me) amalgam.

For some reason when thrillers do this (e.g. Crichton) it seems perfectly reasonable, if MacGuffin-ish, but when tossed into a legal mystery it seemed very out of place. (Eventually it steered into suspense thriller territory too, but too late to make everything seem all right again--if anything, it was just one more element too many, in an already long book).

I suspect the sci-fi elements are what interested the author, and the mystery is a vessel for containing them. She may be pleased, but it didn't work for me.

(Note: 5 stars = rare and amazing, 4 = quite good book, 3 = a decent read, 2 = disappointing, 1 = awful, just awful. There are a lot of 4s and 3s in the world!) ( )
  ashleytylerjohn | Sep 19, 2018 |
Five years ago, Barbara Holloway gave up practicing law. Then Nell Kendricks askes for help. Her husband seven years earlier, until he arrives at the edge of her property and is shot. Accused of his murder, Nell turns to lawyer Frank Holloway and his daughter, Barbara for help. Barbara reclaims the search for truth that first led her to the law. First in the Barbara Hollaway Series.
  mcmlsbookbutler | Mar 30, 2017 |
The story line of this book was a solid 3 stars, enough to make me eager to exercise again to listen to the next chapter. But then, the ending was so bad/predictable/awful that my overall rating must be two stars. ( )
  TheresaCIncinnati | Aug 17, 2015 |
Nell Kendricks is accused of murdering her estranged husband. Lawyer, Barbara Holloway is visiting her father and trying to get her own life in order but ends up taking on Nell's legal defense. Along the twisted path to justice we meet interesting characters and get some insight to Choas Theory. Good read, but it didn't make me want to run out and pick up another in the series.
( )
  ChristineEllei | Jul 14, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 13 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Wilhelm, Kateprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Fields, AnnaReadersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Does the flap of a butterfly's wings in Brazil set off a tornado in Texas? Edward N. Lorenz
For Julie A. Stevens, with appreciation and affection.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0449221555, Mass Market Paperback)

"A book not about ideas but about the impact of ideas...The ending, which I found both surprising and believable, makes good on all her promises."
Barbara had given up the law five years before, but she's still "death qualified," still able to defend clients in Oregon who face the death penalty if convicted. And now her lawyer father needs her back in the arena to defend Nell Kendricks, who's been indicted for the murder of her estranged husband, Lucas Kendricks.
But did she do it? After not seeing him for seven years? And where was Lucas all that time? Ultimately, the small-town courtroom is where the truth can be found--if one can spot it through the blinding maelstrom of injustice, confusion, chaos, reality, and love....

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:16:15 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

Barbara Holloway left a promising legal career defending clients against murder charges when she became disgusted with the system. One call from her father brings her back into the courtroom and into a maelstrom of injustice and confusion.

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