I first read Lisa Scotoline years and years ago, when I was really into legal thrillers. Scotoline has a series based around an all female law firm called Rosato and Associates. Scotolines last Rosato et al., outing was back in 2010. She’s done a few standalone’s in between. But, to be honest, they never really appealed to me. (Sorry, Lisa.) But now she’s back with another Rosato firm book, The Accused, with my favorite lead, Mary DiNunzio.
Mary was first introduced in 2000 in Everywhere that Mary Went. And there is something completely appealing about her. Maybe it’s my Catholic School upbringing , but Mary’s Catholic guilt rang true. Her very Italian parents, their concern, their over involvement in her life, albeit in the most loving way possible, all make you smile. They are a warm hug wrapped around a mystery.
And then there are the Tony’s. Mary has these three friends of her father’s, age seventy and up, who are all named Tony and just want to help. Pigeon Tony, Tony Two Feet, and Tony from Down the Block, are such great entertaining characters. Maybe it’s growing up on Long Island where I was exposed to a great deal of Italian culture, which is a rapid departure from the Scottish culture I experienced in my own home, but I recognized these guys too.
When you read these books, the mystery is engaging, but it’s the characters that make you feel like you’re part of the family. Scotoline does a great job of drawing you in and keeping you there. You care about her characters and you watch how much the other characters care about one another. Who wouldn’t root for someone the three Tony’s care so much about?
The story this time around revolves around a decades old mystery that a thirteen-year-old girl wants solve. But here’s the rub: the victim was her sister and she believes the man sent to prison for her murder is innocent.
I picked The Accused up thinking, well this should be all right. But I’d forgotten how much I enjoy this series. I ended up reading longer than I planned and later than I planned. I finished the book in two days. It was great. Another lost in a book moment. 🙂