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The Holdout, by Graham Moore

I absolutely loved this book. I kept annoying my husband and children by telling them what was happening!
In 2009, 12 strangers begin jury service and get a murder case that goes on for months. When they begin their deliberation, 11 jurors vote gulty but Maya Seale stands firm and asserts her doubts. Gradually, she convinces the others and Bobby Nock is acquitted. This leads to a huge public backlash and notoriety in the media.
To celebrate the 10 year anniversary, the jurors are brought back together for a TV show. One of them, Rick, is found dead in Maya’s room and she is the key suspect. She needs to prove her innocence even if it means that she made a mistake with the original acquittal…
Over the course of the book we discover elements to the original court case which could have caused a mistrial, including the developing romance between Maya and Rick which was killed off by their disagreement over the verdict. These flashback chapters for each character really bring their personalities to life, in contrast to the anonymity of the court room.
I found the legal arguments fascinating, for example when Maya’s lawyer advises her to please guilty citing self defence rather than protest her innocence which was the truth. Looking back at the historical case against Bobby, it was so interesting to sift through the evidence with the jurors and come to our own conclusions as well as trying to figure out what impact this could have on the present day murder case.
As I said at the start of this review, I loved The Holdout. I was captivated throughout the whole book, everything worked so well together: the plot was intricate and thrilling, the characters were well rounded and believable, the narrative style was enjoyable to read. Simply superb!

From the screenwriter of The Imitation Game comes a knockout thriller, The Holdout, that reads as 12 Angry Men meets Serial.
It was the most sensational case of the decade.
Fifteen-year-old Jessica Silver, heiress to a billion-dollar fortune, vanishes on her way home from school. Her teacher, Bobby Nock, is the prime suspect. It’s an open and shut case for the prosecution, and a quick conviction seems all but guaranteed.
Until Maya Seale, a young woman on the jury, persuades the rest of the jurors to vote not guilty: a controversial decision that will changeall of their lives forever.
Ten years later, one of the jurors is found dead, and Maya is the prime suspect.
The real killer could be any of the other ten jurors. Is Maya being forced to pay the price for her decision all those years ago?
About the author: Graham Moore is a New York Times bestselling novelist and Academy Award-winning screenwriter. His screenplay for THE IMITATION GAME won the Academy Award and WGA Award for Best Adapted Screenplay in 2015 and was nominated for a BAFTA and a Golden Globe. The film, directed by Morten Tyldum and starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Keira Knightley, received 8 Academy Award nominations, including Best Picture.

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