The Court of Last Resort: The True Story of a Team of Crime Experts Who Fought to Save the Wrongfully Convicted
by Erle Stanley Gardner (Author)
In 1945, Erle Stanley Gardner, noted attorney and author of the popular Perry Mason mysteries, was contacted by an overwhelmed California public defender who believed his doomed client was innocent. William Marvin Lindley had been convicted of the rape and murder of a young girl along the banks of the Yuba River, and was awaiting execution at San Quentin. After reviewing the case, Gardner agreed to help—it seemed the fate of the “Red-Headed Killer” hinged on the testimony of a colorblind witness.
Gardner’s intervention sparked the Court of Last Resort. The Innocence Project of its day, this ambitious and ultimately successful undertaking was devoted to investigating, reviewing, and reversing wrongful convictions owing to poor legal representation, prosecutorial abuses, biased police activity, bench corruption, unreliable witnesses, and careless forensic-evidence testimony. The crimes: rape, murder, kidnapping, and manslaughter. The prisoners: underprivileged and vulnerable men wrongly convicted and condemned to life sentences or death row with only one hope—the devotion of Erle Stanley Gardner and the Court of Last Resort.
Featuring Gardner’s most damning cases of injustice from across the country, The Court of Last Resort won the Edgar Award for Best Fact Crime. Originating as a monthly column in Argosy magazine, it was produced as a dramatized court TV show for NBC.
William Marvin Lindley
Sutter County, California
Date of Crime: August 18, 1943
A lawyer named Erle Stanley Gardner was referred the case due to publicity Gardner received for his spectacular and unorthodox methods. With Lindley’s execution just days away, Gardner reviewed Lindley’s trial transcripts and made a case timeline. Since the actual clock time of events was little known, the timeline referenced the sequence of events based on distances traveled and witnesses’ contacts with each other. Although Lindley did not appear to have an alibi for the time of the murder, Gardner’s analysis showed that at the time witnesses saw the murderer standing in the willows, Lindley was miles away riding in an automobile with the victim’s father. Thus Gardner showed that Lindley could not have been the murderer.
Governor Earl Warren commuted Lindley’s sentence to life imprisonment. Lindley was eventually exonerated and released after 20 years in prison. The Lindley case led Gardner to begin a program called “The Court of Last Resort” in which individual cases were studied and those deemed to be wrongly convicted were published in Argosy magazine. The program, which lasted about a decade, led to the release of numerous wrongly convicted persons. Gardner was also a mystery writer and the author of Perry Mason books. [5/08]
Enlightenment for Idiots: A Novel
by Anne Cushman (Author)
Nearing thirty, Amanda thought she’d be someone else by now. Instead, she’s an ex-nanny yogini-wannabe who cranks out “For Idiots” travel guides. True, she has a sexy photographer boyfriend, but he’s usually off shooting a dogsled race in Alaska or a vision quest in Peru—or just hooking up with other girls. However, she’s sure her new assignment to the ashrams of India will change everything.
What she finds, though, is an ashram run by investment bankers, a model-obsessed guru, tantra parties, and silent retreats. India, it turns out, is not the spiritual refuge she’d pictured. But she finds a friend in Devi Das, a redheaded sadhu who refers to himself as “we.” And when a holy lunatic on the street offers her an enigmatic blessing, Amanda realizes a new life may be in store for her—just not the one she was expecting.
Lost and Found Series Box Set
by J.M. Madden
WARNING- The Lost and Found Series pulls no punches. As always, there are ups and downs. Readers need to be aware that I deal with PTSD issues, suicide, and miscarriage, amputations, and a wide range of other things. But, as always, there is a happy ending for every book!!!
Sunflower Street (Rose Hill Mystery Series Book 8)
by Pamela Grandstaff (Author)
If you like cozy mysteries with a little romance and humor, you will love the Rose Hill Mystery Series.
When one of Rose Hill’s most popular socialites is found dead under mysterious circumstances, nosy amateur detectives and cousins, Maggie, Hannah, and Claire are determined to find the killer and prove her son’s innocence.
In a twist of fate, Police Chief Scott Gordon finds himself in the unique position of assisting the cousins in an investigation that county sheriff’s detective Sarah Albright has little interest in.
Meanwhile the cousins find that shining a light on the fundraising shenanigans of a local hospital and ripping the lid off a notorious love triangle may prove just as dangerous as cornering a clever sociopath.
It’s August in Rose Hill and as the old-timers say, “it’s the dog days of summer and the snakes will strike at anything.” Indeed, several nasty snakes are feeling the heat, and if the cousins aren’t careful, someone may be bitten.
Sunflower Street is the eighth book in the Rose Hill Mystery Series by Pamela Grandstaff. Also available in paperback.
Angel With A Bullet (Dixie Flynn Mystery Series Book 1)
by M.C. Grant (Author)
Wisecracking reporter Dixie Flynn thinks fast and talks even faster―it’s the only way to survive the San Francisco crime beat. When she’s assigned to look into the death of her former lover, artist Diego Chino, Dixie’s instincts tell her there’s more behind the apparent suicide than the police are letting on.
Dixie’s canvassing of the Bay Area art district reveals it to be a perfect picture of corruption, with a handsome art dealer and a reclusive patron in the foreground. After a romantic evening in Chinatown ends in a brush with death, Dixie is more determined than ever to expose the truth. But when a fire in her vicinity turns out to be more than just performance art, it’s clear the perpetrators would rather see Dixie dead than let her destroy their criminal masterpiece.
“Dixie Flynn may be the most kick-ass heroine ever created. Kudos to Grant for giving us the ultimate ‘girl power’ thriller!” — Tess Gerritsen, New York Times bestselling author