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421 pages, Hardcover
First published January 31, 2012
At seventeen, I knew: my entire childhood had been just a prelude to this girl. I had never felt anything like it, and still haven't. I felt changed by her, physically. Not sexually, though we had sex everywhere, like minks, in the library stacks, in an empty classroom, her car, her family's beach house, even a cemetery.
"I am truly, deeply sorry. Truly."
"Now say you're wrong."
"Say you are wrong. Do you want it or not?"
"Hm. So, just to be clear: all I have to do is say I'm wrong and a beautiful woman will make passionate love to me."
"I didn't say passionate just regular."
"Okay, so: say I'm wrong and a beautiful woman will make love to me, completely without passion but with pretty good technique. That's the situation?"
"Pretty good technique?"
"Yes, Counselor, that's the situation."
"You are staring."
"You are my wife. I'm allowed to stare."
"Is that the rule?"
"Yes. Stare, leer, ogle, anything I want. Trust me. I'm a lawyer."
"I did not share my feelings with Laurie, and I did not try to draw out hers either, because we were all coming apart. I discouraged any sort of frank emotional talk, and soon enough I stopped noticing my wife altogether."
"Do you think he did it?"
"Are you crazy? He's our son!"
A dim memory of Jake as a three- or four-year-old boy when we had a bedtime routine: I would ask, "Who loves Jacob?" and he would answer. "Daddy does." It was the last thing we said to each other before he went to sleep each night.
I knelt beside the bed and circled my arms around Jacob and laid my head on his. I remembered again: when he was a little kid (...)
Certainly he would never allow me to hold him this way if he was awake...
Laury was neither stupid nor belligerent, and in the end she paid the price - but I'm getting ahead of the story.
Damage hardens us all. It will harden you too, when it finds you—and it will find you.It seems that most of the reviews of Defending Jacob compare it to Presumed Innocent. Well, this book falls a little short of that lofty mark, but there’s no shame in that.