by Stephen Penner
In "Presumption of Innocence," Stephen Penner tries to be hardboiled and edgy but falls flat on his face. No Dashiell Hammett, he!
Particularly irritating is Penner's description of women. From their breasts to their asses to their legs to their lips to their hair to their angles to their curves, the women are described by their sexual attributes -- endlessly. Of course, the men are described by their professions and characters or not at all. Plus, all the women flirt endlessly with the protagonist, Assistant District Attorney David Brunelle. If they don't flirt with him, they simply drag him off to bed.
Shallow, superficial, thin are some adjectives which pop into mind to describe this book. Boring and irritating are a couple of others. If your brain is slightly active, I'd recommend moving along if you ever see this book on a shelf. In the first couple of chapters, the reader learns everything he/she has to know. The reader learns the victim, the killer, the killer's assistant, and the person who'll put the perpetrators in prison, Assistant District Attorney David Brunelle, of course. There aren't even any surprises in the plot.
I did learn that there's a place called Elliott Bay in Seattle. Assistant District Attorney David Brunelle can see it from his office. I did not, however, learn what happened to that bucket of blood. That was the only curious thing about the book, and the reader is left hanging.