Alex Madison wore a couple of hats. He was a personal injury lawyer and a Christian minister. Both of his jobs routinely brought him to the hospital either to minister or solicit potential clients. It was during one of these visits that he met Imam Khalid Mobassar, whose wife was unconscious due to a head injury she sustained in a car accident. Their initial meeting did not go well, with Alex being firmly asked to leave. However, as Khalid's wife slowly recovered, he realized she was going to need long term care as well as help with their mounting medical bills. After hearing about one of Alex's civil right cases, Khalid decided to give him a second chance.
The personal injury suit had barely started though, when a young woman was beheaded in what appeared to be an honor killing and all evidence pointed to Khalid as being the one who ordered her death. Could this prominent Islamic reformist truly be behind these brutal murders? Despite the overwhelming evidence, Alex doesn't think so. In quite possibly Singer's best work to date, Fatal Convictions merges two different world views in a griping and intense story that plunges the reader into the worlds of radical and moderate Islam with justice hanging in the balance.
I didn't look to see what this book was about when I requested it from Tyndale. It was written by Randy Singer and I love his novels so I didn't feel the need to research it. Once I received the book and the promotional information, though, I couldn't wait to get started. It obviously had the potential to be an outstanding, thought provoking, relevant novel. Singer delivered this and more. Add to the adjective list, shocking, awing, phenomenal, gripping, flawless execution and that might begin to describe this book. So far I've read eight of his stories and this was the best. I loved it from the first page to the last.
My major question when this book started was a Christian minister representing a prominent Imam? Wonder how's that going to work? It turned out to work very well actually. Singer flawlessly merged these two leaders and created a balanced story that was not a sermon on differences or an attempt to bridge the two religions. In fact, the focus of this story was not religion, but rather the characters and the drama unfolding. What we learn about each religion is more often through the events that are happening. The reader gets a great glimpse of radical Islam, but they also get a better understanding of the difficulties facing Islamic reformers. Singer did a brilliant job of presenting enough information to better understand the characters and their motivations without turning it into an apologetic novel.
A great strength of Fatal Convictions is what's not said. A lot of ground work is laid but the reader is given the liberty to draw their own conclusions and take from this story what is relevant to them. This book is full of ideas and understandings, which was best presented by a lack of presentation.
Aside from the oblivious interesting and possibly controversial story elements, Fatal Convictions was out and out entertaining. Singer took current events and created an awesome fictitious story that was fun to read. The writing was wonderful and flowed beautifully. The story line was solid and entertaining with some twists and turns I never saw coming. It's fiction at its finest.
What else can I say? Singer has always excelled at taking current events and making page turning novels. He stepped it up a notch this time though. I know every book takes effort to write, but this one is so smooth it seems to have magically appeared on the page. With a little bit of something for most every reader, Fatal Convictions is a gem!
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About the reviewer
Melissa Willis (MeliWillis)
A little bit about me. I read primarily Christian fiction. My favorites are suspense, with supernatural elements always being a plus. I most enjoy books that will keep me thinking well after I'm done … more
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Alexander Madison is part lawyer, part pastor, and part con artist. When a Muslim imam is accused of instigating honor killings, Alex must decide whether to take the case that every other lawyer in town is running away from. He doesn’t realize until it’s too late that defending the imam may cost him the one thing in life he cares about most.Fatal Convictionsis the story of a lawyer willing to risk it all and the women who must choose between faith and love.