The first-person narrative will hold the reader captive as Ellice struggles under a tremendous burden of moral and ethical issues, both personal and professional. Then comes danger, when she realizes something definitely illegal is going on within the company. Woven into the story is an eye-opening look at what it is to fight all the -isms of being Black and female in America. Ellice is a compelling and multidimensional hero in this must-have debut that will be embraced by all legal-thriller readers.
... miss[es] an opportunity to explore, through the eyes of a character who has an awareness of the chilling nature of her experience and her interactions with white antagonists, the deeper levels of mundane yet terrifying psychological warfare that Black women experience in white workplaces ... a fairly straightforward, race-bent take on a typical legal conspiracy thriller. Anyone who’s read a John Grisham novel will be familiar with the broad strokes ... Ellice, despite having a law degree and being a Black woman in white corporate America, displays a stunning lack of self-preservation that veers into the fantastic ... Her naïveté about the ways in which racism operates in her workplace and the larger world isn’t just unrealistic—it denies the reader the experience of feeling horrified by it ... The lack of depth defangs any tension that arises, stripping...the layers of fear and anxiety that could make them truly scary and leaving the readers with what is at times boring.
In her debut thriller, corporate attorney Morris deftly combines a creepy Nazi-esque sect with a murderous plot and rounds out the intrigue with a striking commentary on racism, sexual assault, and misogyny.
Attorney Morris puts her experiences as a Black woman navigating the corridors of corporate power to good use in her strong debut, a legal thriller ... The fast pacing doesn’t overwhelm the deep dive into Ellice’s inner life. John Grisham fans will be pleased.
Morris builds an escalating thriller plot packed with convincing details about corporate politics and skulduggery. She also provides a knowledgeable portrait of Atlanta’s complex social structure. One of Ellice’s secrets is Vera Henderson, the woman who raised her and her brother, Sam. Vera, once a fierce defender of children and women, is now a dementia patient in a nursing home, and Morris skillfully paints the loving, painful relationship between her and Ellice. Corporate competition is not only racist and sexist, but deadly in this confident debut thriller.