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Robin Peguero. With Prejudice (Grand Central, $28.00 Signed).
No one knows what happened that night. Seven strangers must decide.
Earl Thomas, a straight-laced taxman with his fair share of police encounters, is the begrudging foreperson in a high-stakes trial in Miami. Laura Hurtado-Perez is a physician whose unassuming manner conceals a private pain. Joseph Cole is the founder of his local neighborhood watch, unduly obsessed with the families around him.
Along with four others, these jurors of varying ages and walks of life whose paths would likely never have otherwise crossed must come together to make one of the most important decisions of their lives.
On the night Melina Mora, a free-spirited woman both proud and kind, was murdered, she was seen with a young man of Gabriel Soto’s description. Two strands of her hair were found in his bedroom. Sandy Grunwald, a young prosecutor whose political ambitions depend on securing a conviction, finds herself pitted against Jordan Whipple, a preening public defender armed with a freshly discovered, dynamite piece of evidence on the eve of the trial—if the Honorable Darla Tackett will admit it.
What Sandy, Jordan, and Judge Tackett all know, however, is that the criminal justice system is complicated, and everyone has a story—especially the jury. And it’s their experiences, biases, and beliefs that will ultimately shape the verdict.
With striking originality and expert storytelling, Robin Peguero’s debut novel explores the prejudice that hangs over every trial in America. You’ve never read a legal thriller quite like this. There’s never been a thriller writer quite like Peguero. And you will not be able to predict how it all ends.