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Saturday, May 29, 2010

Review and Giveaway - Three Copies of ALEX CROSS'S TRIAL

  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing; Reprint edition (April 6, 2010)
  • ISBN-10: 0446561800
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446561808
Rating: 5.0

Description from Author's site:
Alex Cross tells the incredible story—passed down through the generations—of an ancestor's courageous fight for freedom.

From his grandmother, Alex Cross heard the story of his great-uncle Abraham and his struggles for survival in the era of the Ku Klux Klan. Now, Alex passes the family tale along to his own children in a book he's written—a novel called Trial.

A lawyer in early-1900s Washington, D.C., Ben Corbett fights against oppression and racism—and risks his family and his life in the process. When President Theodore Roosevelt asks Ben to return to his hometown to investigate rumors of the resurgence of the Ku Klux Klan there, he cannot refuse.

In Eudora, Mississippi, Ben meets the wise Abraham Cross and his beautiful daughter, Moody. With their help, Ben discovers that lynchings have become commonplace. Ben vows to break the reign of terror—but the truth of who is really behind it may break his heart. Written in the fearless voice of Detective Alex Cross, ALEX CROSS'S TRIAL is a gripping story of murder, love, and unparalleled bravery.

This was an awesome story depicting Ku Klux Klan brutality, racial hatred and the atmosphere of fear that reigned in southern communities in the early 1900s. 

Do not be misled by the average rating at Amazon. Apparently a lot of Alex Cross fans were outraged that the book was not about Alex Cross but used his name in the title.  I agree that the title “Alex Cross’s” Trial was strange, but the book description indicates that it is not an Alex Cross mystery. Rather it is presented as a book written by Alex Cross.

Ben Corbitt is sent by Presidential order to investigate the truth of lynching activities in his home town of Eudora, Mississippi.  Ben is a sensitive Washington, D.C. lawyer who has bypassed legal fame and fortune to devote himself to helping the poor and oppressed. There is an interesting side story dealing with Ben’s martial trouble as his wife objects to his failure to seek monetary success instead of the path he has chosen. But duty calls and Ben heads off not realizing the terror he will face.

Abraham Cross has been directed to assist Ben and he shows Ben around the “Quarters” where the blacks live in dilapidated shacks. Then Abraham takes him to the stately homes of the wealthy whites with the nearby lynching trees that are set up for “entertainment” during the brutal punishment and murders. Abraham’s young granddaughter, Moody, is stubborn, resentful and belligerent.  These three characters exhibit extreme bravery facing a hostile community.

Ben knew he would not have a warm welcome from his estranged father.  Unfortunately, Ben  slowly discovers that he may not be able to trust any of his old childhood friends as he finds them
deceiving him and in cahoots with the very men who threaten to kill the “upstart” blacks and Ben.

Several incidents of beatings and murder go unheeded. Finally three white men are arrested and charged with murder when they are caught red handed during an attack against Abraham and his family in his own home.  I was distressed by the complete injustices during the ensuing trial and not real thrilled with the Presidential response. On the other hand, it all fit with the times and the story.

I was fascinated and horrified by this descriptive, up close and personal, account of beatings and lynchings. The story gives insight into possible fears of the white men and women that resulted in their horrible treatment of black people during this turbulent time. It opened my eyes and made me think more about the injustices suffered by the blacks and the white people who were willing to try to help them. "Gripping" is an apt description for this story.


1.a) Tell me if you know of another book that you would recommend that depicts these racial struggles. Or
b) Check out the video of the author on this book and comment on it.

2. For an extra entry, become a follower or tell me if you are already a follower.

3. For another entry, blog, facebook, tweet (any of those networks!) about this giveaway and tell me where you did.

It isn't necessary to use separate entries unless you want them in different chronological order.
(Three total entries possible.)  MAKE SURE YOU LEAVE YOUR E-MAIL!

THANK YOU AGAIN TO HACHETTE AND VALERIE for providing the book for me to read and providing the books for Giveaway!

* This contest is only open to residents of US and Canada.
* No P.O. Boxes Please - for shipping reasons
* This contest will close Midnight (Central) on June 11, 2010. The winners will be randomly selected from all entries.


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