An Absence of Ethics by JB Millhollin

four stars

An Absence of Ethics by JB Millhollin is a well thought out journey into the short comings and intricacies of law as well as the the sometimes confusing desires of the heart. Rosa Norway is a strong-headed and capable attorney working for justice in Nashville. When she receives the case of Jake McKay, a man who appears to have murdered a prostitute, she does not know that it is the case that will change the course of her life in ways that she could never have imagined. For many years, she had focused her energies on her education and then her career, inching closer and closer to becoming partner at her firm. When Rosa meets Judge Hampton, the judge presiding over McKay’s case, she feels stirrings that she has never felt before, something akin to love, something that could potentially grow to be love. As these feelings continue to expand, all of Rosa’s years of hard work fade into the background and her code of ethics is challenged. Should the needs of the heart outweigh the importance of ethics? Is the personal life more important than the professional life? How should success be defined?

Millhollin’s writing is precise and well-researched.  He creates characters whose struggles the reader can understand, sympathize with, and want to see happily solved. These realistic characters arise from Millhollin’s deep understanding of the things that make humans tick. He understands the things that upset, anger, and push what an individual can take to the limits. The deeper that Rosa engages with Judge Hampton, the more she questions what makes her tick and where her limits are, and the more she questions her fundamentals, especially those that relate to her ethics.

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