NetGalley review: A Covenant with Death: A Novel by Stephen Becker

27991202Title: A Covenant with Death
Author: Stephen Becker
Published: Jan. 12, 2015
Publisher: Open Road Integrated Media
Pages: 256
Genre: Mystery
Review: ebook provided by publisher and NetGalley
Buy Links: Amazon, 

On a sultry day in the spring of 1923, Louise Talbot spends the last afternoon of her life lounging in the shade of a sycamore tree in her front yard. Beautiful and vivacious, Louise is the talk of Soledad City—every man lusts after her; every woman wants to know her secrets. She is found strangled to death that evening, and when the investigation uncovers her affair with another man, the citizens of the frontier town draw the obvious conclusion: Bryan Talbot murdered his wife in a fit of jealousy and rage.
Presiding over the trial is twenty-nine-year-old Ben Lewis. Appointed to the bench as a tribute to the memory of his late father, he fears he is too inexperienced to sentence another man to death. All the evidence points to Talbot, however, and it is a magistrate’s sworn duty to see that justice is served. But when a last-second twist casts the question of the defendant’s guilt or innocence in a shocking new light, Judge Lewis must decide whether to uphold the law—or let a murderer go free.
A thrilling suspense story and a fascinating inquiry into human nature and the true meaning of justice, A Covenant with Deathwas a New York Times bestseller and the basis for a feature film starring George Maharis and Gene Hackman.

I received this book via NetGalley to give an honest review.
So I was asked if I would like to read this book as I read The Hanging Judge and enjoyed that one. This book fell a bit flat for me. When I read the synopsis I figured there would be more of a twist something of pzazz but for me there really wasn't. I could not really connect with young Ben though I found it to be cool he was a judge at a young age. I think that this book might be more suitable for anyone who isn't looking for a big plot so to speak. It was very interesting to have a bit of insight on how the judicial system worked in the 1920's especially in small towns. 
I honestly don't know what else to write and I have been sitting on this review for a few days it just was not my kind of book. I think I may have to leave this review like this as I don't know what else to write.

Stephen Becker (1927–1999) was an American author, translator, and teacher whose published works include eleven novels and the English translations of many works, including Elie Wiesel’s The Town Behind the Wall and The Forgotten and AndrĂ© Malraux’s The Conquerors. He was born in Mount Vernon, New York in 1927, and after serving in World War II, he graduated from Harvard University and studied in Peking and Paris, where he was friends with the novelist Richard Wright and learned French in part by reading detective novels. The recipient of Paul Harris and Guggenheim Fellowships and a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, Becker taught at numerous schools throughout the United States, including the University of Iowa, Bennington College, and the University of Central Florida in Orlando. His best-known works include A Covenant with Death (1965), which was adapted into a Warner Brothers film starring Gene Hackman and George Maharis; When the War Is Over (1969), a Civil War novel based on the true story of a teenage Confederate soldier executed more than a month after Lee’s surrender; and the Far East trilogy of literary adventure novels: The Chinese Bandit (1975), The Last Mandarin (1979), and The Blue-Eyed Shan (1982).
Equally distinguished as a translator, a biographer, a commentator on the popular arts, and a novelist, Stephen Becker brings to his fiction a breadth of experience with world culture and human behavior which yields moral complexity and psychological verity in his work. Two major themes intertwine through his novels—the problems of justice and the necessity for self-knowledge and self-fulfillment.
Becker's examination of society's structure and limitations and his portrayal of men seeking "grace under pressure" is a significant contribution to contemporary fiction. The existential premises of the works—individuals finding meaning inside the arbitrary bounds of social order—reflect our acceptance of the civilization we have built.
Read more: Stephen (David) Becker Biography - JRank Articles


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