From start to finish I was on a hook. I kept trying to figure out how the story might end and I was thrown for a loop. There is a point where you think everything is wrapped up neatly just to find out that it is not at all.
This is a court-room drama, a mystery, a story about family dynamics...It contains coming of age and coming undone.
I really enjoyed it and at the same time it made me think. It is a good listen for any parent, Could this happen in your family?
The narrator is good. It is worth the listen.
Super riveting listening....a little long winded in the court room scenes perhaps ...but a great book overall.
Liked Grover Gardner's style of reading, speed and clarity
It is not often that a book takes me by surprise but Defending Jacob did, I so did not see that ending coming, I don’t want to give too much away you just need to read this book. This novel revolves around the Barber family; Andy Barber, top Assistant DA, his wife Laurie and their 14 year old son Jacob; living in the prestige town of Newton Massachusetts. Jacob is accused of murdering his classmate, Ben Rifkin and in the state of Massachusetts must be tried as an adult. Throughout the book Jacob claims he is innocents, William Landay will keep you dithering throughout the book- guilty .. not gulity – he certainly had me question Jacob’s guilt or innocents. To throw you off we hear Andy being questioned in front of a grand jury – but why? Defending Jacob is well written, Landry will keep you on your toes with lots of twist and turn but the ending will definitely leave you with your mouth open. A must read!
Grover Gardner narrated this book and was superb.
The story had compelling characters with great potential for the storyline. However, the longer the story went on, the less I was impressed. It became difficult to tell who was the main character, Jacob or his father. I suppose I might have forgiven the muddled character lines had I been enticed to care about Jacob at all. There was never interjected any insight to his character. Only a steady stream of reflections by the narrator, Jacob's father.
The initial intrigue of the murder was a draw in the first part of the narrative. The boy had been accused of the most horrible crime and his life was hinging on his father's determination to prove him innocent. However, Andrew Barber, attorney at law, cannot seem to separate himself from his son. He goes on and on defending his son, but the story is really about himself. It becomes a lengthy exercise in self-awareness and guilt-mongering which never reveals Jacob at all. Perhaps the plot was designed to leave the reader uncertain, but it only made me less interested as the story played out.
The old Irish thug, Father O'Leary. He was a minor character, but at least he was mysterious enough to be interesting.
No. I would not recommend it.
In fairness, I am not a fan of this type of story. It was told me that William Landay's writing was very John Grisham-like. I can't see that comparison at all. The story was not a complete flop, but had I not been vested with hours of travel time with the audio, and had I been reading the novel, I likely would have tossed it aside well before I reached the end.
This book is fascinating. You will spend so much time considering "Is Jacob guilty?" "Is his father blind to him?" "Who has their story right?" "What causes a person to kill?" There is so much depth here. I very much enjoyed the story and the narration here is good. The narrator reminded me of what a Connecticut lawyer would probably sound like. That is a good thing. A have a friend who read this book and found it very depressing. So, be warned, this is a difficult topic, particularly for parents.
Didn't really care for the ending.
I don't think I should base his performance on this book.
One of the best books I've listened to.
The father's undying devotion is memorable.
His voice was a little high pitched for my taste at first, but after a few minutes, he had my complete attention and respect.
Sins of the Fathers
I can find a book to love in any genre -- a beautifully written classic, an interesting mystery or sci-fi, a trashy romance. Bring it!
Defending Jacob is a very good legal whodunnit story with a lot of emphasis on the impact to Jacob's family, especially his father who is a District Attorney. As a legal professional, I noticed some departures from proper procedure which made me chuckle but, all in all, did not detract from my thorough enjoyment of the story.
The reader was very good, but if he would have differentiated between the voices it would have been better. There were a couple of times in the trial where I was unsure who was talking.
The ending to this story is one of the most unexpected endings I've ever experienced in a movie or book. It was awesome!
The story kept you guessing from start to finish.
He was believable as several characters.
Yes, but that's impossible.
The story is an interesting one and I like the way it was done with the grand jury. The plot does a nice job of keeping you wondering about Jacob's guilt or innocence. The reader did a great job of bringing life to the characters.