“When, on the afternoon of Wednesday, 11 September, Venetia Aldridge stood up to cross-examine the prosecution’s chief witness in the case of Regina v. Ashe, she had four weeks, four hours and fifty minutes left of life.”
A Certain Justice opens with the reader’s knowledge of English criminal lawyer Aldridge’s imminent future. We’re given enough of her life to suspect several with enough motivation to see her dead: colleagues who resent her ideas of progress and whose future she influences, colleagues who want less competition for a desirable position, and a sociopathic killer she successfully defended. More suspects turn up as Adam Dalgliesh begins his investigation into her murder. Nearly everyone in her life has a reason to want her gone.
My favorite characters were Adam and his associate Kate. I liked following them as they pieced together the events. I only wish there had been a bit more insight into their personal lives as very little was given.
I was disappointed with the ending. The reveal was quick and boring. I did like that it acted nicely as a bookend. Aldridge was a brilliant defense attorney ultimately done in by someone who understood the game of evidence as well as she did.