A while back I read Joel Goldman’s novel NO WAY OUT and really enjoyed it for its twisty plot, fine pace, and interesting characters. Now some of Goldman’s earlier novels are being reissued as e-books, and I’ve had the chance to read one of them, MOTION TO KILL, the first novel featuring attorney Lou Mason as the protagonist.
Despite having the same last name, Lou is no Perry Mason, as one of the other characters actually points out in the novel. He’s a corporate attorney handling mostly financial matters, although he did some personal injury work in the past, before he came to work for the firm where he is currently a partner.
One of the firm’s clients, a wealthy banker, is the target of an investigation by the U.S. Attorney in Kansas City, where the book is set. The partner who is handling the case turns up dead under suspicious circumstances during a corporate retreat at a lake in the Ozarks. The local sheriff handling the case is a beautiful blonde and a former FBI agent who gets romantically involved with Lou.
Corporate attorney or not, Lou is forced to turn detective when somebody tries to kill him and then several more murders take place. As in the other book of his I read, Goldman does a terrific job of weaving together secrets from the past and double-dealing in the present to create a masterful plot. Even better, though, is the character of Lou Mason, who makes a really likable hero. Lou has a tendency to being a smart-ass, and he’s quick-witted and tough enough to untangle the deadly mess in which he finds himself. On top of that throw in a nice job of portraying the Midwest setting, and MOTION TO KILL is a fine book. I’m glad e-book editions of the other Lou Mason novels are in the works, because I plan to read them, too. Highly recommended.