A shocking act of terror brings the Middle East to the point of explosion. As the resulting political conflict threatens to erupt, a young Jewish-American lawyer joins the defense team of an arrested but possibly innocent Palestinian. Soon the lawyer's father, a famed criminal attorney, must win the Palestinian's case or risk losing his daughter forever. To do so, he must take into account the tormented history of the Holy Land from every possible angle.
The Trials of Zion combines the tension of the greatest courtroom dramas with the action of a fast-moving thriller, all set against the colorful backdrop of one of the most complex cultural settings in the world. Filled with memorable characters, this novel offers listeners not only compelling suspense but a panoramic view of the history of a beloved and bitterly contested land, and a sharply controversial perspective on the sources of - and the possible solutions to - the world's longest and most crucial international crisis.
The premise, while immersed in current events, did not work for me. In East Jerusalem, American, Israeli, & Palestinian Presidents reach a peace agreement televised round the world. As they hold hands in unity, a bomb explodes killing them and other bystanders. I know this work is fiction, but there are limits as to what a listener will invest in as probable. I just don't believe that in today's volatile world that security for heads of state is that pathetic. The setting in the crucible that is the Middle East is interesting, and some characters develop well. The story line did not progress in a gripping manor though. One sure thing suspect arrested, then released - oops. Then another taken into custody who WANTS to be found guilty, and our man Abe is required to get this guy off the hook to save his daughter's life. I admit that I judge any novel about the Middle East against Richard North Patterson's magnificent work "Exile" which is among the best novels I have ever experienced! The Trials of Zion just fell short for me.
Perhaps it would have been better if I had bought the book rather than the audio book. Dick Hill can be very good, but he over did many scenes which took away from the story. I sure don't want be too critical of Mr Hill's talent, but this effort didn't come together as I had wished. Referring again to Patterson's "Exile", Dennis Boutsikaris gave a brilliant narration, elevating the novel to epic heights! Boutsikaris left huge shoes to fill in his untimely death.
Where my low opinion of this book was sealed was the scene with the old spy and the priest. This may well have mirrored some recent headlines that rocked the Catholic Church, but that doesn't mean that the author must embed such such land mines of deviate behavior so as to ambush a listener/reader when the distasteful revelation could have been handled in another way. I enjoy re-listening to favorite audio books, but Trials of Zion will be left to gather virtual dust.
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