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Book Review: Former Chief Justice doesn’t hold back with new court room thriller

A book review of Denial by Beverley McLachlin
Denial by Beverley McLachlin
Denial by Beverley McLachlin

Beverley McLachlin served as the Chief Justice of Canada for seventeen years and uses her legal knowledge and experience to create a gripping thriller in Denial, her second novel that continues the story of Vancouver criminal lawyer Jilly Truitt.

After a rocky start to her law career, Jilly is making a name for herself as a top defense lawyer, and now has the luxury of being able to choose her clients.

Therefore, when Jilly is approached by well known lawyer Joseph Quentin to defend his wife, Vera, who is accused of killing her mother, she wants to say no. Two lawyers before her have walked away from the case and the media is calling it a mercy killing. Despite her misgivings, Jilly agrees to meet with Vera, whom she feels is telling the truth when she denies the killing, leading Jilly to take the case.

Adding to the tension surrounding this case, Jilly is set to face her old nemesis, prosecutor Cy Kenge, in the courtroom. Determined to remain one step ahead of the merciless Cy, Jilly delves into the case with gritty determination to find the truth.

As Jilly gathers information from the Quentin family and the caregiver, she begins to uncover secrets none of them are willing to share. The more she digs, the more cracks appear in the case prompting Jilly to question what really happened that night.

Meanwhile, another case has triggered Jilly becoming embroiled in a human trafficking case, and placing her in the sights of a vicious gang. With her life in danger can Jilly get to the bottom of the murder trial as Vera maintains her innocence, Joseph pushes for the plea deal and everyone is in denial.

Helen Varga is a Library Technician at the Steveston Branch of the Richmond Public Library. She is currently reading the Iona Whishaw mystery series. For other popular reading suggestions check out Richmond Public Library's Web site at