This is the story of a promising attorney, who returns home to rural North Carolina to defend an innocent man.
The attorney happens to be a white woman named Starlight, and the defendant happens to be a young black man, the teenage grandson in a family where they are all friends of Star.
That charge that she will be defending Samson against is murder. And this is Starlight's first trial... she isn't a trial lawyer.
Take a good look at the book cover. See the well-built and weather worn cabin? See the sunlight shining through the trees? The hills, cabins, and people of the backwoods form Starlight's roots, and they shaped her whole life.
*Castles of the Heart* starts in those hills, and it ends there, but in the intervening years Starlight journeyed far from her home.
This book is not just about the final courtroom moments, this book begins with Star's childhood and how the experiences that she had defined her.
We start back when she was a little girl, a precocious child who entered third grade instead of first, and who made fast friends with the entire Hopkins clan. Star head the stories that patriarch Solomon told about his ancestors, and she adopted the Hopkins children as her second family.
Then we follow Star into her later school years, and her first introduction to the law at an incredibly young age. The prodigy with a near-photographic memory becomes an ambitious woman with a brilliant mind.
Starlight's narrative voice as a female attorney in the 1940's is unique. Her whole world is opened up to us as we read, and we are allowed to hear the story of her heart.
I enjoyed "listening in" on her conversations about politics and economics during the Depression, and hearing her thoughts on the war, and witnessing her love of Justice and willingness to fight to achieve Liberty for all.
I could picture *Castles of the Heart* being a movie someday, the story is that good and that compelling.
Thank you to Hale Meserow and Fred and Nora St. Laurent at Bookfun.org for my review copy!
Author, small businessman, Christian, and conservative. Married 25 years, two grown sons, one granddaughter. Disgusted by MN politics.