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One Man's Paradise by Douglas Corleone

One Man's Paradise

by Douglas Corleone

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Attorney Kevin Corvelli is coming off a stunning courtroom defeat in which his client, Brandon Glenn, was found guilty of murder. Brandon was soon after discovered dead in his jail cell, a suicide. Corvelli, trying to distance himself both geographically and professionally from this defeat, moves from Manhattan to Hawaii and vows (half jokingly, half seriously) to take only traffic tickets and misdemeanor cases.

When Jake, his law office landlord, brings Kevin a murder case with a $50,000 initial retainer, he's hooked (he's got a mountain of law school loans to pay). The case involves the murder of a young woman, Shannon Douglas, who the prosecutor suggests was murdered by her ex-boyfriend, Joey, with whom she recently broke up.

One Man's Paradise, Douglas Corleone's debut novel, won the Minotaur Books/Mystery Writer's of America First Crime Novel Award (what a mouthful, huh?) and I can see why. Corleone has an easy going writing style, has created a bunch of great (presumably recurring) characters (Jake, Kevin and Flan their private investigator who all fled their past, as well as Dapper Don Watanabe, the prosecutor) and an interesting set of one time characters. The plot moved swiftly, with a satisfying number of twists and turns. While I'm not a 'humorous' mystery fan, Corleone's humor was low key and I did laugh out loud a few times.

If One Man's Paradise is the start of a series, and I think it is, bring it on. I'll sign up for book two. ( )
  EdGoldberg | Nov 16, 2011 |
It was an interesting read for me for several reasons. First of all, I have never read a book with my own home as the backdrop. It was strange from that standpoint because I kept listening for things. Don’t ask me what things, just things. Secondly, my reading experience has always been one of finding a link to the narrator telling their story. In this case, there were several times that I just wanted to reach out and slap him! My mind kept thinking, “Dumb ass!”

I guess I have very little patience for misplaced arrogance, or something. As dumb as he came off at first, he was actually quite legally clever, when he stopped being so self-important and actually put his mind to it. Matters of the heart were something quite different. Men aren’t always very intelligent in the realm of dealing with manipulative women anyway. I’m just saying. There are deviant and manipulative women in every story so there is no surprise there!

As things move along in the story and a new case falls into his lap, Kevin is no longer concerned with his own notoriety; his concern and focus are with proving his client’s innocence. There are interesting twists and interesting and twisted characters.

For my full review, go here: http://writesprite.wordpress.com/2010/09/28/book-review-one-mans-paradise/ ( )
  HonoluluSprite | Sep 29, 2010 |
First, let me say, that this book takes place in Hawaii and is the authors debut Novel..Since he is living in Hawaii, there is a sense of realism to the story. Words, both hawaiian and pidgin, are bantered about in a Hawaiian way. Not how we think it is, but how it truly is.... Loved it-like being home.
Characters were strong and easy to follow. Open for more Novels. The protagonist was not a perfect man, but with flaws making him believable.
I loaned the Arc to a friend who is an avid Mystery reader and picky. I know that it was good enough to pass her critique. Great read. ( )
  Kikoa | Sep 1, 2010 |
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VERDICT This winner of the 2009 Minotaur Books/Mystery Writers of America First Crime Novel Award by a former defense attorney will leave readers with a greater understanding of trial preparation and what constitutes professional integrity. Fans of John Grisham, Lisa Scottoline, and other legal thriller authors will enjoy this for the sheer pleasure of seeing a master defense attorney at work in the courtroom. [Minotaur First Edition Selection.]
added by DSCorleone | editLibrary Journal, Jo Ann Vicarel (pay site) (Apr 1, 2010)
This novel won the Minotaur Books/Mystery Writers of America First Crime Novel Award, and it’s no wonder. Former defense lawyer Corleone has created a crafty and memorable character and placed him in a suspenseful and layered story. Kevin Corvelli was a defense lawyer in New York until his apathy toward his clients led to the conviction of an innocent man, who was later murdered in prison. Now Kevin is living in Hawaii, still working as a lawyer but doing so purely to pay off his staggering student loan. “I don’t like my clients,” he tells us, “and I don’t care if they like me.” But when a law student is accused of
murdering his former girlfriend, Kevin discovers that he actually does give a damn whether this particular client is guilty or innocent. This is a solid, well-written legal thriller with quite interesting ethical undercurrents. Kevin’s journey begins at personal and professional apathy and ends at some form of redemption. Perhaps the author plans to continue Kevin’s transformation in subsequent novels: a sequel to this fine debut would seem almost mandatory.
added by DSCorleone | editBooklist, David Pitt (pay site) (Mar 15, 2010)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0312611587, Hardcover)

2011 Shamus Award Finalist for Best First Novel
Hotshot New York criminal defense lawyer Kevin Corvelli was rolling. He had all the right connections to get way ahead. Guilty? Innocent? It didn't matter so long as he won, got in the papers, and got paid. That's until he loses---and loses big---when a client, who was convicted and then killed in jail, is later proven innocent. The media has a field day plastering Corvelli's face all over Manhattan, so Corvelli, disgraced and in a professional free fall, bolts for Hawaii.

Committed to being a lawyer if only because of the knee-buckling debts he accumulated becoming one in the first place, he sets up shop in paradise and swears to handle only misdemeanors this time around---no felonies, no murders, no media attention, no high stakes, no real responsibility. But his first case turns out to be exactly that: law student Joseph Gianforte, Jr., is accused of chasing his ex-girlfriend to Hawaii and killing her. He's innocent, same as Corvelli's last case, only this time Corvelli knows it, and with that knowledge comes the chilling realization that the killer is still out there with plenty of incentive to make sure that any proof of Gianforte's innocence doesn't go any further than the three of them.

Douglas Corleone's One Man's Paradise­, the winner of the Minotaur Books/Mystery Writers of America First Crime Novel Competition, is a gripping story of failure and the search for redemption, and it marks the stellar debut of an exciting new crime-writing voice.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:12:11 -0400)

Corvelli blames himself for failing a client who was killed in prison after being wrongfully convicted. In an effort to make a new start, he relocates to Hawaii, where his first client is a law student accused of bludgeoning to death his ex-girlfriend.… (more)

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