Monday, November 30, 2009

Re-Read Challenge - Rage of Angels

Title: Rage of Angels
Author: Sidney Sheldon
Publishing Date: 1980
Genre: Mainstream Fiction
Rating: C+
Sensuality: Warm
Book Disclosure: Checked it out from the library and re-reading for Nath's Re-Read Challenge.

Rage of Angels is the story of Jennifer Parker, a young woman whose life's dream has always been to become a lawyer. Her only living relative, her father was a lawyer but passed away Jennifer's senior year of law school. Being a devoted student she passes her bar exam in one attempt and lands a prestigious position with the Attorney D.A.'s office in New York City. Her first day on the job she is to assist Robert Di Silva in prosecuting Michael Moretti, son-in-law to one of the leaders of the Mafia organization. Things go terribly wrong and Jennifer makes a grave mistake that almost costs her to be disbarred from practicing law. The first part of Rage of Angels, is the story of Jennifer establishing herself as a lawyer despite the role she played in the disaster of Michael Moretti's trial. The second part of the book follows Jennifer's fall from grace.

The first time I read this book, I was in high school (guessing 15 or 16 years old) and I was absolutely riveted to the pages with the trials and tribulations Jennifer Parker faced in this story. I even remembered some of the details to the book, like Jennifer's first trial with the convicted prisoner who murdered a man while in the correctional facility. She wins his case and it makes her a huge success and gives her much needed positive publicity. I also remembered Jennifer being very likable and a really great person who was willing to offer her services for free to those who couldn't afford her. She believed in the law and felt that everybody had a right to a fair trial. I remember her being very clever and she would win cases that seemed just down right impossible to win. I was pretty sure there was romance in it, but I couldn't remember the details.

As much as I did remember, there was a lot of stuff I didn't remember. It's funny how we tend to block out the things we don't like about a book. Like I pretty much blocked out the whole second part of the book, which is the part where things take an ugly turn for Jenny. I don't want to give any spoilers, so I won't be going into detail. See the thing about Jenny is that even though she seems so great, she still makes mistakes and she pays dearly for those mistakes. Jennifer makes some choices that I didn't agree with. I understood them, but I didn't like her decisions. Jennifer has a relationship with two men in this book, Adam Warner a Senator and Michael Moretti the Mafia leader. Both of those men are married, so obviously a "happily ever after" isn't in the cards for her with either of those men. Since being a fan of romance, I really didn't like that Jennifer was committing adultery. It left a sour taste in my mouth.

I can still say that I was riveted to Rage of Angels once again. I really enjoyed reading this story. The amount of research Sheldon put into the court trials was meticulously done and they were fascinating. The characters are richly drawn. I would recommend this book to fans of regular fiction, but if you are looking for a "happily ever after", you won't find it here.

This book can be purchased in print format from Amazon.


nath said...

Sounds like an okay book. I read one or two Sidney Sheldon when I was younger (about 15-16 too! LOL :) and thought he was okay.

I don't think I'll pick up this book, but I'm glad you were still riveted :)

Leslie said...

I remember reading this a long time ago. And riveting is exactly how I would describe it. Great review Jill!

Jill D. said...

Nath - It's funny how 20 years can change a person's perception - or what a person will choose to remember. It really is an interesting book. It's one that would be fun to discuss with other people because Jennifer's character is morally interesting. But yeah, I wouldn't recommend it to you unless you were really in the mood for something different.

Leslie - It was nice to go back and revisit a favorite from my teenage years. I guess you could say a book that helped shape my current reading habits. We have such similar reading tastes, they even span the test of time.