by Anthony Franze
on Tour March 21 - April 21, 2017
A young law clerk finds himself caught in the crosshairs of a serial killer in this breathtaking thriller set in the high-pressure world of the Supreme Court, from renowned lawyer Anthony Franze.
Things aren’t going well for Grayson Hernandez. He just graduated from a fourth-tier law school, he’s drowning in student debt, and the only job he can find is as a messenger. The position stings the most because it’s at the Supreme Court, where Gray is forced to watch the best and the brightest―the elite group of lawyers who serve as the justices’ law clerks—from the outside.
When Gray intervenes in a violent mugging, he lands in the good graces of the victim: the Chief Justice of the United States. Gray soon finds himself the newest—and unlikeliest—law clerk at the Supreme Court. It’s another world: highbrow debates over justice and the law in the inner sanctum of the nation’s highest court; upscale dinners with his new friends; attention from Lauren Hart, the brilliant and beautiful co-clerk he can’t stop thinking about.
But just as Gray begins to adapt to his new life, the FBI approaches him with unsettling news. The Feds think there’s a killer connected to the Supreme Court. And they want Gray to be their eyes and ears inside One First Street. Little does Gray know that the FBI will soon set its sights on him.
Racing against the clock in a world cloaked in secrecy, Gray must uncover the truth before the murderer strikes again in this thrilling high-stakes story of power and revenge by Washington, D.C. lawyer-turned-author Anthony Franze.
“THE OUTSIDER is as authentic and suspenseful as any John Grisham novel—and I like Grisham a lot.” —JAMES PATTERSON, #1 New York Times bestselling author.
“Crafty and clever! Franze’s insider knowledge of the Supreme Court sets this twisty legal thriller apart. The sympathetic plight of the outsider hero, Grayson Hernandez, will keep you glued to the pages; the explosive plot will leave you breathless.” —LISA GARDNER, #1 New York Times bestselling author
It has been quite a while since I last read a legal thriller. I enjoy the works of John Grisham, Scott Turrow and Grif Stockley. This is my first time to read a work of Anthony Franze. So far, it has been very engrossing just like the works of the three authors I have mentioned. Franze is a lawyer himself, so it's just obvious and to be expected that his expertise and experiences as a lawyer are very imminent in his writing.
The plot is intricately planned and laid out. As it unravels, it still remains to be seen as to who the perpetrator is in the series of murders in this story. A lot of angles and theories has been explored that would throw the readers doubts as to who has done it. A very well-played move that will leave the readers guessing until the very end. I have thoroughly enjoyed this chase for the killer and for wrecking havoc and chaos in the highest court of the land. The story intimately described the inner workings of the Supreme Court. It gave the readers a picture of how the Supreme Court justices functions and how the clerks serve as a fundamental part of the whole system to work. I also liked the legal trivia on the most notable decisions ever made by the highest court. For those who love buildings and architecture, it is fascinating to know the distinguishing features of the structure and design of the Supreme Court building that are not known by most people.
Honestly, I had an idea of who the killer might be but I was not so sure. I think at some point, the author did throw some very very subtle clue which made me suspect. But it was so subtle that it was negligible. In the end, I was still a little surprised to find who it was.
What I liked most about the story was how the character of Grey was made. I like protagonists who are underdogs. I root for them. Grey here is the same and how his character was shaped, his background and where he grew up made him a close image of someone in real life. And giving him a Mexican-American background tops it all. It made his character even more perfect to this story. Aside from the usual protagonist that we mostly encounter, Grey absolutely represented and conveyed the message of the author across to the audiences as intended.
I give this 4.5/5 envelopes. Definitely, my frustrated inner lawyer was so absorbed in this legal thriller. I will not be surprised if more stories of Grey's law practice would be made. I am actually looking forward to more of them. More of Grey, please Mr. Franze!
Your argument is akin to the man who kills his parents and then pleads for mercy on the grounds that he's an orphan.- Anthony Franze, The Outsider -
ANTHONY FRANZE is a lawyer in the Appellate and Supreme Court practice of a prominent Washington, D.C. law firm, and a critically acclaimed thriller writer with novels set in the nation’s highest court. Franze has been a commentator on legal and Supreme Court issues for The New Republic, Bloomberg, National Law Journal, and other major media outlets. He is a board member and a Vice President of the International Thriller Writers organization.
Franze lives in the Washington, D.C. area with his family.