Monday, August 17, 2015

A House Divided by Robert Whitlow ~ Book Tour and Review

Publisher's Description:
A father's mistakes nearly cost his children everything. Now his children must unite to take on the most important case of their respective careers.

Corbin Gage is slowly drinking himself into the grave while running a small law practice in a small Georgia town. The assistant DA in the same community is his son Ray, poised for a professional breakthrough based on a job offer to work for the best law firm in the area. Roxy is Corbin's daughter, a rising star associate in Atlanta for an international law firm that specializes in high stakes, multi-million-dollar litigation. Against the advice of everyone in his life, Corbin Gage takes on a toxic tort case on behalf of two boys who have contracted non-Hodgkin's lymphoma due to an alleged chemical exposure. The defendant, a herbicide/pesticide/fertilizer company, is the largest employer in the area. Because of the lawsuit, Ray's job offer evaporates, forcing him to go to work with his father. Roxy's expertise in complex litigation draws her into the drama. As their investigation uncovers an audacious conspiracy to conceal dangers to their community, Corbin, Ray, and Roxy come to a personal treaty in their pursuit of justice. But they soon discover that burying a problem can have explosive results.

My Thoughts:  For the most part I really enjoyed this legal story that also delves into the issue of alcoholism and it's devastating effects on family.  Corbin is a crusty old lawyer who's law practice is barely treading water.  His relationship with his grown children is tenuous at best and pretty much non-existant at worst.  His son is a little more open to him than his daughter, who really resents his un-involvement in their growing up years due the alcohol and has written him out of her life.  Living in Atlanta she is pursuing partnership in a huge international high stakes litigation firm.  His son, who is also a lawyer, allows Corbin into his life due to the special relationship that Corbin has with his own son, but when Corbin cannot control his drinking even around his grandson, he might lose even that.  As Corbin's decisions start to spin out of control, and once again start to devastate all whom he cares about, he is forced to take a hard look at where his love of alcohol has taken him.  In the midst of all this he has taken on one of the toughest cases of his career and he needs the help of those he is alienating.

I found both the legal case and the personal story very interesting in the book.  This family must face real problems in their lives brought on by the alcoholism of their father and I thought their reactions and behavior rang quite true.  Corbin's journey to facing what his life and decisions had wrought upon his family drew me right in.  The influence of the mother, who was a Christian, on the family was also written well into the story.  Even though her death was a catalyst in the beginning of the story to set Corbin on his journey, her legacy of faith was woven into the lives of her family beautifully.  The only thing I didn't like about this story was the very beginning where there seemed to be quite a bit of  lawyer "language".  Not being exposed to much legal jargon I found it a bit tedious wading through that, but that slowed down as the story went on and then the book really picked up for me and drew me right in.

The book was provided free of charge by Thomas Nelson and the BookLook Bloggers program.  All opinions are my own and I was not required to give a positive review.


Barbara H. said...

I've read one of his years ago and keep planning to read more but haven't yet. This sounds like a good one to keep an eye out for.

Faith said...

I must saw tihis novel on a store shelf and wondered about it! thanks for the review!

Karen said...

Great review, Susanne. My book pile is a mile high, but I enjoyed the story through your post.

nikkipolani said...

Thanks for this review, Susanne, and the description of the drier lawyer jargon. I appreciate it when an author can use some of the jargon but have it in enough context that as a lay reader you don't peter out.

Jerralea said...

I adore books by Robert Whitlow. I think he is one of the best. Having grown up with an alcoholic father, I would be very interested in reading how the family dealt with the situation.