AS I said yesterday I was reading crime all Christmas. This is the second Marianne Wesson I've read though the first in the series of three (so far) that she has written. Featuring Lucinda (Cinda) Hayes, an attorney, these are intelligent and enjoyable novels and deserve to be better known. Wesson is an attorney herself, so the legal detail is superb and always convincing. In this novel Cinda is working in a Rape Crisis Centre in Boulder, Colorado, having got disillusioned by her ten years as a DA. But then she gets a request, rather out of the blue, to handle an appeal on behalf of Jason Smiley, a convicted rapist and murderer. Although decidedly confused and unwilling she goes to meet Smiley and, despite being convinced of his guilt on the rape charge, comes to believe he is not guilty of murder. Clearly this puts her in a hideous position of divided loyalties. Add to this a great deal of corruption in the police and the judiciary, a new love affair which is gloriously enjoyable but brings its own problems, and a close friend in deep trouble, and Cinda's life is complicated and upsetting to say the least. Wesson writes with great intelligence and Cinda is a most attractive character. There is a twist at the end which I never saw coming. Very enjoyable read.