#BookReview #TheTrial by John Mayer @johnmayerauthor


Well, sometimes you find a new series and you have to have yourself a wee binge! And that’s exactly what I’ve been doing with The Parliament House series from John Mayer.

Today I’m reviewing The Trial, which is book one in the series. I read the 3 prologues last week and while you don’t need to read them first, they are a superb introduction to the man that is Brogan McLane.

What the blurb says:

When Glaswegian Brogan McLane completes many years of university education and legal training he crosses that great divide from Glasgow to Edinburgh. ‘Called’ to the Bar of the Scottish Supreme Court, he becomes a member of the most prestigious club in Scotland; The Faculty of Advocates in Parliament House.

When High Court Judge, Lord Aldounhill, is found dead after a transvestite party in his sumptuous home, those who know the killer close ranks and need a scapegoat – who better than ‘outsider’ Brogan McLane?

Out on bail with his career on hold, McLane and his band of blood brothers in the Calton Bar in Glasgow need to get ahead of their enemies or McLane will go down for life after Trial. But every time they discover a piece of evidence, it seems there is a mirror image to contradict it.

Through the murky world of Russian controlled transvestite hotels and with some unexpected police and judicial help, McLane battles against ‘Low Life in High Places in the Old Town’ until the killer is found.

But well protected and knowing all the tricks, will the killer ever stand trial in Parliament House.

My thoughts:

The Trial sees Brogan McLane, Advocate, at the centre of a murder trial. But this time he is on the wrong side of the dock and we are taken on a nailbiting and stomach-churning journey to find out just why he is being both prosecuted and persecuted!

Well, this is a series with a twist, it is not a police procedural but rather a legal procedural and is perfect for those who are intrigued as to what goes on behind the doors of our justice system. I am fascinated by the legal system and this fed my thirst for thrills and chills alongside some extremely clever plotting and character development.

Set in the Parliament House in Edinburgh, the series features Brogan McLane, a Glasgow boy born on the wrong side of the tracks but one who has made his presence known in one of the most prestigious houses of law in Scotland. Brogan McLane is his own man and is not prepared to stand and kow-tow to anybody. Nor has he forgotten his East End roots and so the book takes us from the opulent surroundings of some of the most esteemed in the legal profession in Edinburgh to the rough and ready Calton in the East End of Glasgow. I know both areas John has written about and he has he has created a realistic picture as well as providing an outstanding backdrop for this series.

The courtroom scenes were superb, I could almost see the theatrical performances from the lawmen, the drama filling the pages as each side argues the case. Damn I was right there, right inside that court! John Mayers has got this down to a T! Which is not surprising as much of this series mirrors John’s own background and I am intrigued as to how much fact is in this book of fiction! I’m not going to lie, I love Brogan McLane and all that he stands for, he is the perfect Glaswegian done good, not ashamed of where he came from or afraid to speak his mind and stand for justice.

The Trial opens up a whole can of worms about the hidden lives of those who serve justice and one mans determination to uncover the truths. If I ever found myself on the wrong side of the law Brogan McLane is the man I’d want standing on my side!

Big Joe Mularkey is also back in this book, he and Brogan have been “brothers” since birth and their relationship has not faltered since Brogan was called to the Bar. The Glaswegian characters were all painted to perfection and if you come from Glasgow then you will all know of a Calton Bar somewhere in the city.

We meet some rather unsavoury characters in the book and it is fair to say that not all lowlife are to be found in the poorer areas of our cities. Corruption, abuse of power and skewed justice are all explored at length in this novel and I must admit I finished the book feeling even more suspicious of our legal system than I already was!

The plot is full of twists and turns as Brogan sets out to prove his innocence but he knows that he’s got a tough time ahead of him as he’s seen inside the walls of justice and knows that it’s not always just!

The series is perfect for those with a love of all things legal. Clarification is provided in a glossary at the beginning for those not familiar with Scottish legal terms. It could be described as being overly legalistic at times but I found it fascinating as I do find the whole justice system intriguing. I’m so going to be one of those folk that spend the day in the public galleries at court!

The Trial is a perfect start to what I think is going to be a brilliant series from John Mayer. I am looking forward to reading the rest!

The Trial is available to purchase from:

Amazon UK

Amazon US

4 thoughts on “#BookReview #TheTrial by John Mayer @johnmayerauthor

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