Beyond Guilty by Richard Brawer

Reviewed by Teri Davis

beyondHas there ever been anyone that really was convicted of murder but was not guilty? Of course, there has to be at least a few.

Eileen Robinson is a typical teenager. When she is to babysit her little sisters, she leaves them while she goes out. However, her little sisters attempt to heat up their dinner and end up burning down their home. Her mother blames her for their deaths. So Eileen leaves and begins a new life.

Being the wife of a drug dealer does not mean that you are part of the drug world. Once her husband is arrested though, life again becomes a challenge for Ellen.

Then the nightmare begins. Two teenagers break into her house looking for drugs. What better place is there to find drugs than the home of a convicted dealer? However, there are no drugs at the house and Eileen awakens and confronts the two only to end up wrestling with one over a gun. When the gun goes off, Eileen finds herself holding the weapon with a state senator’s son dead. So who gets blamed? The black mother whose husband is in prison is the easiest answer to the judicial system whose decision is first degree murder.

Eileen has many regrets as she awaits her impending death. Even at the end, she truly hopes to see her children and mother one last time. No one is there for her as she breathes her last.

Eileen is shocked when she awakens on a Caribbean Island and discovers that she has been injected with HIV. Many inmates who have died from lethal injection are on this island with her as human subjects to explore the benefits of nano-medicine in the treatment of disease. The inmates have freedom while on the island but there are also armed guards and sharks surrounding this little piece of heaven. Or is it?
Richard Brawer is the author of four previous novels. He enjoys his retirement writing, sailing, growing roses, and living in New Jersey.

BEYOND GUILTY is thought provoking by forcing further thoughts about capital punishment and racial profiling. The characters are uncomfortably realistic and the action is fast-paced. I look forward to future novels by this author.

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