Fern Michaels, Jury

Posted October 8, 2011 by Kathy Davie in

The Jury (Sisterhood, #4)The Jury by Fern Michaels
Series: Sisterhood, 4
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Fourth in the Sisterhood vengeance and suspense series revolving around a group of women vigilantes seeking their own brand of justice for the wrongs done to or against them.

The Story
It’s Nikki’s turn for vengeance and she’s thoroughly confused. She’s sure that the ladies expect her to want retaliation against Jack Emery for trying to find evidence against them and that’s not what she wants. In fact, she wants just the opposite. And isn’t that going to throw a spanner in the mix!

Luckily, she finds a better target against the Barringtons, their lawyer, and the very-conflicted judge in the case. Then they find another target…

My Take
This was an odd one. Michaels waffled all over the place. First it’s Nikki’s turn up to bat. So everyone takes a four-month vacation. Nik is assuming she’s supposed to go after Jack but chooses to take on the Barringtons and her newly-fired employee along with the judge instead but in reality they go after the wife-beating high politico instead.

SPOILER
The Pissy Bits
Okay, I know I’m being overly picky. Michaels’ writing does that to me. In the Prologue, she had Myra and Charles stating that they’d “reconvene the first of September”. On the next page, Chapter 1, it’s “the last days of September” and we never find out why they waited an extra three-plus weeks. Especially when we discover the horrid outcome of the lawsuit with the Barringtons and their lawyer, Nikki’s own new-hire in her law firm, getting a millions-of-dollars judgment against Myra.

Then there’s the fact that Nikki spent four months on an island and is “deeply tanned”. She’s back one day and can already see her tan fading…??? Damn, it must be expensive going to tanning salons if a natural tan can fade in just 24 hours…

The scene at the park where Nikki goes to have lunch and indulge in memories of her and Jack bugs me. And it’s so typical Michaels. Nik’s been at the park long enough to eat her sandwich and indulge in regret over their picnic table where no one is sitting. As she’s getting ready to leave, she notices Jack, walks over, and he whines about her “ruin[ing] my day by showing up here”. As though he was there before she was…! I know, picky. Then she throws her sandwich on the table for the birds. Right after she’s told Jack that the blue jays are mean and they’ll go for his eyes if he keeps tossing popcorn on the table for them. Um, if she really meant that wouldn’t she have thrown the sandwich on the ground away from the picnic table?

Then, after the attack in her law office, Nik calls Jack and he just runs to her aid? After the nasty words he’s tossed at her?? There’s no segue here. From total hostility to total caring. Then there’s the apartment discussion where Nik has just asked Jack to stay here and his response is Where was Michaels’ editor? It would have been so much better if she’d phrased it as “”Do you mean stay here as in stay here, or do you mean stay here as in move in?” Then there’s the actual move in. At first Michaels has Jack wondering how all his stuff will fit in only half the closet, dresser, and vanity then on the next page, he’s looking at his pitiful wardrobe of three suits and two sport coats. Then, why does Nikki suddenly spill all the beans on who Charles really is? She just lets rip with everything.

What’s with the so-very abrupt turnabout of Kathryn against Nikki? Sure, I think Kathryn has a right to her concerns, but there’s no lead-up to it. It just comes out of the blue. And with very little evidence on which to base it. Then there’s the comment he makes about this being the first fire he’s made this season. When he had already made a fire in Nikki’s living room some 80 pages ago…

I feel rather conflicted about the beating the ladies inflicted on the abusing husband. Not that he didn’t deserve it. It is rather a fair payback. But to actually be able to stand there and do it. Oh, boy. Again, none of the ladies have any remorse over even feeling the need to beat someone this badly. I also have to admit that I rather like the wife’s implication, when she returns from where she was hiding out, that she’ll be sure to take good care of him while he recovers…


The Good Bits
I do like that Jack finally gets what it is that Nikki and company are doing. It’s too bad it had to happen the way it did, but it does do the job and force the emotional aspect into him.

I do like the loyalty of Nikki’s fellow lawyers in the firm. It’s this loyalty—between lawyers and the mostly loyal friendship of the ladies along with the true justice being meted out—that I keep reading this series in spite of Michaels’ writing.

The Cover
We’re back to the hand and the flower for a cover. Again, the hand is rough with a nice manicure but it seems more age-roughened than work. It’s an open palm holding a red rose against a softened purple and black background. As for the title, The Jury, well, the jury is out in every sense of the word.

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