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Joseph Antonelli Books In Order

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Publication Order of Joseph Antonelli Books

Creating legal crime thrillers, the American author D.W. Buffa is well known for his taut and tightly knit story-lines. Working as a leading criminal defense attorney prior to becoming a full-time novelist, he would gain an insight into this world unlike any other. This has helped provide his work with a sense of realism over the years, with his ongoing series and novels. His main series to date is that of his ‘Joseph Antonelli’ novels; a series which follows his eponymous protagonist of the title. Charting the legal career of the criminal defense attorney and, later, prosecutor Joseph Antonelli, it largely draws from his own life and experiences. Taking an in-depth look at the world of legal defense and how it really operates, this thriller series really manages to provide an inside look at the profession.

Running for a total of seven books so far and counting, this is a series that started out back in 1997 with the novel ‘The Defense’. Following on from each other chronologically, they manages to chart the various highs and lows of the legal profession. The last book to be released in the series was the title ‘Trial by Fire’, which brought the series to its final conclusion in the year of 2005.

The Defense

Initially brought out in 1997 through the Fawcett publishing outlet, this was the first title in the ongoing ‘Joseph Antonelli’ series to be released. Brought out on the 1st of October, it would set-up the world and various characters that inhabit it throughout, establishing its premise and setting. It would also provide the leading character of Joseph Antonelli with his first opening character, allowing him to show the reader what he’s all about.

Working as a legal mystery thriller, this is set deeply within the world of law and order, giving it a sense of realism. This is what ostensibly allows the reader to find themselves more deeply immersed within the narrative and the characters. Obviously having done his research with plenty of experience behind him, Buffa brings this world to life for the reader. The character of Joseph Antonelli himself is obviously drawn from Buffa’s own experiences, putting some of his own personality into him. Accentuating him for the benefit of the story, he’s very much the ‘dynamite lawyer’ that everyone turns to in times of need. The secondary characters are also especially well drawn too, as they all essentially play off Antonelli, as he seeks to provide those in need with justice. Bringing the world of law and order to life, it allows the reader to feel as if they’re really there; from the courthouse to the offices and back-rooms. This allows the stage to be set for some tense negotiating, giving a definite clear insight of how things really operate there. Showing the politics and the power, Buffa definitely makes the most of his setting, as he really allows it to reflect the conflict of the characters.

The dynamite leading defense attorney Joseph Antonelli is well known for his ability in the courtroom, having never lost a court case. Soon, though, his ideals are all set to be tested, as he is tasked with a case unlike any other by the most honorable Judge Rifkin. He’s set to defend a known drug dealer who has been accused of horrifically raping his own twelve-year-old daughter, something which really tests Antonelli, as he has to look deep within himself and question where his loyalties lie. Will he be able to do the right thing this time? Can he ensure that justice prevails? What will become of the defense?

The Prosecution

Published in 1999 just two years after the first, this picks up from where the previous title left off with another case for the famous attorney. Continuing in much the same vein as the original, it makes some surprising changes to the format, as this time Antonelli is prosecuting instead of defending. Brought out through the ‘Ballantine Books’ publishing label, it really manages to take what made the first work and move the format forwards.

Like before this title takes some extremely hard-hitting themes and ideas and, ultimately, makes them work within the context of the story. Setting them up for the following novels to come as well, they really manage to come alive for the reader, giving them a clear idea of where things are heading. Using the concepts of law and order again too, it really manages to give the reader a very clear idea of what this world is actually like to work in. The characters are also once again very well realized, as Joseph Antonelli has progressed and learned a lot from the previous novel. Constantly evolving as a character, he’s moved forwards, as the readers travel alongside him, getting involved in his journey throughout. This also makes the series feel very immediate and current, giving it a highly timeless quality that is unlike any other. The world of law and order is also brought to life once more too, as Buffa brings his in-depth knowledge to the forefront once more. Like before it has many of the same courthouse settings, whilst this time opting for the perspective of the prosecution.

This time all set to prosecute instead of defending, former defense attorney now turned prosecutor Joseph Antonelli emerges from retirement once more. This time his job is to send a deputy district attorney to death-row following a case of murder-for-hire that he was involved in. What soon transpires is a case of corruption and betrayal that goes all the way up, as Antonelli finds himself pulling on some threads that can’t be undone. Will he discover the truth? Can he ensure justice prevails once more? What will become of the prosecution?

The Joseph Antonelli Series

A quality collection of novels that really gets into what it’s actually like to work within the legal defense industry. Not only that, but it also creates a lasting character in the form of Antonelli himself who is smart as he is shrewd. All of these components add up to making an extremely compelling legal thrillers to date, with a series that keeps the reader hooked from start to finish.

Book Series In Order » Characters » Joseph Antonelli

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