Four bystanders in the wrong place at the wrong time. Witnesses to the shocking shooting of a teenage boy. A moment that changes their lives forever. Fiona, a midwife, is plagued by panic attacks and unable to work. Has she the strength to testify? Mike, a delivery driver and family man, faces an impossible decision when his frightened wife forces him to choose – us or the court case. Cheryl, a single-mother, doesn’t want her child to grow up in the same climate of fear.
Dare she speak out and risk her own life? Zak, a homeless man, offers to talk in exchange for witness protection and the chance of a new start.
©2011 Cath Staincliffe (P)2011 Soundings
This story follows the lives of four people who witness a murder, and what they must go through before they can come forward and identify the murderers. Fiona is a midwife who has just helped a woman give birth at home when she hears a shot. She looks out the window, sees a teenage boy fall to the ground, and rushes out to see if she can help save his life. The car with the shooter in it almost hits her trying to get away, and she sees the face of the shooter. Mike, a delivery driver, just happens to be passing on the street when he sees a boy jump out of a car, and shoot the teenager in cold blood. His wife becomes convinced that gang members are involved and that they will be punished if Mike testifies. Cheryl is a single mother from the neighborhood who knows the two gang members involved. She has just talked to the teenage boy when she sees the two gang members go by, and then hear the shot and knows they shot the boy. She knows how dangerous the boys are and tries to stay out of the way. Zack is a burglar who, while burglarizing an apartment, hears a shot, looks out the window, and also sees the gang members, whom he also knows from the neighborhood. Eventually all four of these people end up going to the police. Fiona has panic attacks afterward and has to take anti-depressants. Mike has to lie to his wife when he decides to testify, and also loses his job. Cheryl must decide to testify even though she loses her best friend. And Zack cuts a deal on a crime he committed in order to go into the witness protection program to give evidence. The four witnesses testify behind a screen so they aren’t identified to the gang members, and the defense lawyers tear them apart. An excellent psychological novel.
This was a fascinating look into the lives of people who witness a particular crime, and know who was responsible. Testifying becomes a big concern because of gang retaliation.
The narrator read most of the female characters as if they were constantly hysterical. She did a HORRIBLE job on the characters with Carribean roots.
This one is probably better in paper. The narrator really detracted from this book.
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