Line of Vision

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Published by: Berkley
Release Date: February 5, 2002
Pages: 448
ISBN13: 978-0425183762



David Ellis’s Line of Vision won the 2002 Edgar Allan Poe Award for Best First Novel by an American Author.

Marty Kalish is a young man suffocating in the heat of an affair with a married woman named Rachel. When Rachel’s husband disappears one night, Marty is one of the first to be questioned. With few likely suspects, the police arrest him for murder. We know Marty was outside their home that night. We know he has a motive. We know he’s guilty of something. But is it murder?

Everything we have learned—about Marty as a man, his affair with Rachel, and the night in question—comes from Marty himself. But as the trial unfolds to a jaw-dropping conclusion, we learn that there is more to the truth than one man’s narrow line of vision.


“A wicked courtroom thriller . . . Ellis’s fine use of the first-person narrative … helps drive the plot into areas of character where courtroom thrillers rarely venture . . . a twisty, spellbinding story.”
—Publishers Weekly

“A bravura performance by David Ellis, who elicits a range of responses in readers from sympathy to condemnation. Best of all, nothing is settled until the final pages of this highly entertaining book.”
—Chicago Tribune

“After just about every permutation of the legal thriller has been served up by the likes of John Grisham and Scott Turow, Ellis arrives with a surprisingly fresh take on the genre. The novel crackles with unexpected twists and some nifty surprises-like Patricia Highsmith with an extra shot of adrenaline.”
—San Francisco Chronicle

“A well-written, surprising, completely original gem. The best suspense novel I’ve read in a while.”
—James Patterson, New York Times bestselling author

“A tautly crafted, provocative first novel . . . Ellis does a remarkable job of keeping us in suspense on all fronts until the final, riveting pages . . . a hair-raising courtroom drama, but also a character study in which the mystery of Kalish the man is as spellbinding as the mystery surrounding the murder.”
—BookPage Reviews

“This is not just another courtroom drama written by a lawyer turned novelist. The book is filled with twists, and most will be cheering for Marty in a cynical way. It’s a great debut with a fascinating legal, but not necessarily moral, original ending.”
—Daily Oklahoman

“David Ellis . . . provides his reader with almost continuous tension and a surprisingly sympathetic narrator. The struggle is compelling and the verdict a stunning surprise.”
—St. Louis Post-Dispatch

“It will be hard to imagine any legal thriller being better than Line of Vision . . . an incredible tour-de-force that is must reading . . . as a fresh exciting new voice has raised the quality level of this genre.”
—Bookbrowser Review

“Ellis captures the imagination from the very first page. The highly original premise of this story is masterful. The courtroom scenes in this novel are among the very best . . . and crackle with authenticity.”
—Otto Penzler, Amazon’s Penzler’s Picks for February, 2001

“What a wicked delight! Line of Vision is an absolutely terrific legal thriller. David Ellis’s unnerving hero beguiles like Patricia Highsmith’s Ripley at his most devious. This story grabs, shakes, twists up and won’t let go all the way through to its deeply satisfying resolution.”
—Perri O’Shaughnessy, author of Move to Strike

“Don’t think you can put Line of Vision down-you can’t. David Ellis won’t let you go, from the first tantalizing page to the final double-twist. Get ready to dangle from the precipice.”
—Barbara Parker, author of Suspicion of Malice

“A stylish debut.”
—Kirkus Reviews

“The most original and exciting thriller I’ve read in a long time. Starts at fever pitch and never lets up. Every time you think you’ve figured it out, the story veers off in a different, jaw-dropping direction.”
—J.F. Freedman, author of Above the Law and Against the Wind

“A spellbinding legal drama, sexy, seductive and full of surprises, and featuring a fascinating-if unreliable-protagonist. The best first novel I’ve read in a good long while.”
—William Bernhardt, author of Murder One