Having been enthralled by Phillip Margolin’s novels, I found myself scanning the bookshelves for his name on the binding. I was lucky to have come across his novel “Gone, but not forgotten” as it kept me entertained and made up for the disrupted internet connection we had this week.
A lawyer’s (Betsy) civil and moral duties are tested as an investigation she initiates in defense of her client leads to evidence that convinces her that she may be trying to save a man who should not be saved at all. Nevertheless, every criminal has a right to an attorney to help clear them of their crimes despite the apparent evidence against them.
While it does not have the most original premise, what makes this novel so engrossing is that it is written in a way that keeps the readers guessing and turning the pages until they realize that they are already half-way through the story. It lets you in on the fact that a ruthless serial killer may very well be one whom you would better think of as a respectable man, so it is best to be on guard. It also shows that there are also killers who can do worst damage without a gun, leaving the victims wanting to be shot instead.
Another contemplative concept in this story is that a life is still a life. There should never be a question of which is more moral – saving thousands in sacrifice of one life or the other way around. In the story, the killer persuades the government to grant him pardon and let him go free, or else the missing women will die since he is the only who knows where they are. The government had no choice. A life is still a life.