REVIEW: Madman Walking by LF Robertson (Janet Moodie #2)

Series: Janet Moodie

Book Number: 2

Read this book for: legal procedural, death row appeal, realistic process, prison stories

Quick Review: A highly realistic legal procedural that is refreshingly honest about the way the system works, and without the extra filler that you often find in legal thrillers. A must read.


Howard Henley is not a killer. That seems obvious to lawyer Janet Moodie when she’s called in to work his appeal. Her new client was convicted of arranging the shooting of a drug dealer, but the man who pulled the trigger has always said Henley had nothing to do with it. So why is Henley the one on death row?

Janet’s new case takes her from the desperate world of prison gangs, where men are murdered as an initiation rite, to the courtroom, where a mental illness might mean the difference between life and death. Can she convince a judge of her client’s innocence before it’s too late? MADMAN WALKING is the second novel in LF Robertson’s series featuring defence lawyer Janet Moodie and her death row appeals. In this instalment, she takes the appeal of a man who has been wrongfully jailed for the murder of a drug dealer, and the entanglements of the system that put him there.

This novel follows the first (TWO LOST BOYS), but it is not necessary to read that novel before this one, although it will give you a bit of deeper background on the characters. However, if you enjoy legal procedurals, I do highly recommend reading it, as it is very similar in style to this one.

Much like TWO LOST BOYS, this is a strict legal procedural, without any action or thriller embellishments. These kinds of reads are a refreshingly different kind of story; it’s almost like reading a report of a non-fictional case. Robertson has a wonderful talent for the administrative details of a legal case, and immensely realistic.

Part of this realism stems from the reasoning that Janet Moodie uses. No surprise insights, no flashes of revelation, just good reasoning and bits of clues revealed as they progress through the investigation. It is immensely satisfying to see a investigation proceed in this logical way, and it keeps you turning pages as you step through the investigation, needing to know the next piece of information that will be revealed.

For its simplicity and un-flashy storytelling, MADMAN WALKING is a refreshingly well-told, realistic and satisfying legal procedural. I highly recommend picking this one up if you have an interest in the legalities of a crimnal case, and are looking for an accurate and intriguing story.

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