When three men announce that they are suing the Rosato & DiNunzio law firm for reverse sex discrimination—claiming that they were not hired because they were men—Mary DiNunzio and Bennie Rosato are outraged. To make matters worse, their one male employee, John Foxman, intends to resign, claiming that there is some truth to this case.

The plaintiffs’ lawyer is Nick Machiavelli, who has already lost to Mary once and is now back with a vengeance —determined to not only win, but destroy the firm. It soon becomes clear that Machiavelli will do anything in his power to achieve his end…even after the case turns deadly. The stakes have never been higher for Mary and her associates as they try to keep Machiavelli at bay, solve a murder, and save the law firm they love…or they could lose everything they’ve worked for. Told with Scottoline’s trademark gift for twists, turns, heart, and humanity, this latest thriller asks the question: Is it better to be loved, or feared…

My Thoughts: I always love revisiting the characters in the Rosato & DiNunzio law firm, but in Feared, the newest outing, I was even more drawn in by Mary DiNunzio in her new role as an expectant mother. Her fierceness masked her vulnerability, and kept her swinging as she worked with her partners to battle their nemesis, Nick Machiavelli.

When the lawsuit began to look like an uphill battle, everything got much worse when someone was murdered. Bereft and still swinging, the women did everything in their power to solve that case and follow the clues that would bring the lawsuit to an end.

I’ve always enjoyed Mary’s thought processes, and watching her figure out the connections that would tie the case up for them was as enticing as always. I especially enjoyed the camaraderie between the law partners, Mary, Benny Rosato and Judy Carrier. The family and friends from the neighborhood added just the loving network that Mary needed during difficult times.

As solving the murder seemed to elude the partners, the suspense increased dramatically; and then an unexpected clue brought the answers, but would it be too late? I kept rapidly turning pages until the very end of this 5 star read.

***My e-ARC came from the publisher via NetGalley.


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