Crime of Privilege: A Novel

Crime of Privilege: A Novel - Walter Walker George Becket is a deputy D.A. and sometime chump, trying to solve a murder in a community where one obscenely wealthy family holds all the power. Is it worth risking his job, and maybe even his life, to find justice for the victim's family?This is not only a mystery, but an exploration of the social strata on Cape Cod. The Gregory family displays that sense of entitlement we envy and despise, and their sins are often overlooked or covered up. People like George Becket, who don't come from privileged backgrounds, are expected to know their place and play along. Consequences can be unpleasant for those who follow their consciences and step out of line.I was feeling crabby about this book at first, because I didn't like the first 20-30 pages. But I was determined to give it a chance, and I'm glad I did. It was confusing for awhile trying to keep track of all the peripheral characters. Eventually I got sucked into the game as George chases red herrings all over the globe. He's convinced the Gregorys are covering up a murder, and he's determined to expose them, if only to assuage his guilt over a party rape he witnessed many years ago in Florida. Back then he allowed the Gregory family to buy his silence, just like the people he's now tracking down.I would have liked a little more closure to the story, but it's to the author's credit that he showed some restraint. It's more realistic not to have the villains spill everything at the end, and a powerful family is even less likely to tell anyone exactly how everything went down. The names and pertinent details in this novel have been changed to protect the filthy rich and famous. The author's too smart to imply that this fictional family was modeled after those Irish Catholics from Massachusetts with a penchant for politics. So it's not about that family. Really, it's not. It's fiction. But the parallels are too obvious to disregard. A giant compound on Cape Cod. A winter home in Florida. Crimes that go unpunished thanks to money and political clout. And especially the reference to "the Senator and his kids and his sisters' kids and his late brothers' kids." Despite all the parallels, though, I thought the Gregorys' diabolical behavior was a lot more like the Bushes than it was like any Democrats you might be thinking of.Rating = 3.5 starsPerfect for a lazy day by the pool or a long plane ride. Thank you, Ballantine Books, for sending me a review copy.