SIDEBAR Spring 2020 - 8

MONTGOMERYBAR.ORG

BOOK REVIEW:

Justice, Justice
Shall You Pursue
by MBA member
Jules Mermelstein
Review By David A. Keightly, Sr., Esq.

I

have known Jules Mermelstein
for more than 40 years, so I was
delighted to find out that he was
writing a crime novel. We met when I
was a mere teenager, getting involved in
Upper Dublin politics, and Jules was a bit older, wiser, and more
involved. I was even more delighted when he sent me a digital
copy, more pleased still when I read it, and finally, the most
pleased when he asked if I would review the book.
The book, Justice, Justice Shall You Pursue, is a fast-paced tale
of a terrible crime, and the investigation and trial that follows.
The title is from the Bible's Deuteronomy 16:20.
The two main characters are Allen Crosby, an Upper Dublinbased venture capitalist, who does business all over the world,
and Joshua Frankel, his lawyer. Crosby seeks out Frankel's
help after his wife, Deidre, is murdered when Allen goes for a
walk through the woods to an ATM machine at a local bank.
As usual, the surviving spouse of a murder victim is the first
suspect. But Crosby has an air-tight alibi, because of the video
camera at the ATM, right? Not so fast.
Lawyer Joshua Frankel is a rare criminal defense attorney in
that he will only represent people who are factually innocent or

8 SIDEBAR

for whom justice otherwise requires a not guilty verdict. Would
it even be possible to have such a practice and still make a
living? Those of us who practice criminal defense know that the
handling of a criminal case is often more about controlling and
limiting the damage to a client than it is about winning a total
exoneration. Perhaps Jules was modeling Frankel in part after a
wonderful lawyer who is a recent Montgomery Bar President,
and who I used to kid about having only innocent clients?
But our lawyer hero Frankel is so good at what he does that
he is able to pull off such a practice.
Many questions will pop into the head of the discerning
reader: Did anyone else have a motive to kill Deidre? Was Allen
really the target? Did Allen create any enemies that might have
wanted him dead or otherwise silenced? Is Allen really innocent?
Why would he want his wife dead? Is there any corroborating
evidence? What will Josh uncover during his investigation?
I can't answer these questions for potential readers, because
that would spoil the fun of reading this intricate tale, and might
even spoil Jules' book sales. I certainly don't want to do either of
those things.


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SIDEBAR Spring 2020

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