Defending Jacob - William Landay

Defending Jacob

By William Landay

  • Release Date: 2012-01-31
  • Genre: Mysteries & Thrillers
Score: 4
From 3,879 Ratings


NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • NOW AN APPLE TV+ LIMITED SERIES STARRING CHRIS EVANS, MICHELLE DOCKERY, AND JAEDEN MARTELL • “A legal thriller that’s comparable to classics such as Scott Turow’s Presumed Innocent . . . tragic and shocking.”—Associated Press

This special ebook edition features exclusive bonus content:
• A new essay by the author about the inspiration for Defending Jacob and the book’s themes
• A behind-the-scenes interview with William Landay and Apple TV+ about the making of the TV series

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY Entertainment Weekly • The Boston Globe • Kansas City Star

Andy Barber has been an assistant district attorney for two decades. He is respected. Admired in the courtroom. Happy at home with the loves of his life: his wife, Laurie, and their teenage son, Jacob. Then Andy’s quiet suburb is stunned by a shocking crime: a young boy stabbed to death in a leafy park. And an even greater shock: The accused is Andy’s own son—shy, awkward, mysterious Jacob.

Andy believes in Jacob’s innocence. Any parent would. But the pressure mounts. Damning evidence. Doubt. A faltering marriage. The neighbors’ contempt. A murder trial that threatens to obliterate Andy’s family. It is the ultimate test for any parent: How far would you go to protect your child? It is a test of devotion. A test of how well a parent can know a child. For Andy Barber, a man with an iron will and a dark secret, it is a test of guilt and innocence in the deepest sense.

How far would you go?

Praise for Defending Jacob

“A novel like this comes along maybe once a decade . . . a tour de force, a full-blooded legal thriller about a murder trial and the way it shatters a family. With its relentless suspense, its mesmerizing prose, and a shocking twist at the end, it’s every bit as good as Scott Turow’s great Presumed Innocent. But it’s also something more: an indelible domestic drama that calls to mind Ordinary People and We Need to Talk About Kevin. A spellbinding and unforgettable literary crime novel.”—Joseph Finder

Defending Jacob is smart, sophisticated, and suspenseful—capturing both the complexity and stunning fragility of family life.”—Lee Child

“Powerful . . . leaves you gasping breathlessly at each shocking revelation.”—Lisa Gardner

“Disturbing, complex, and gripping, Defending Jacob is impossible to put down. William Landay is a stunning talent.”—Carla Neggers

“Riveting, suspenseful, and emotionally searing.”—Linwood Barclay


  • Good Book

    By mmmmlhghjj
    Great book. Story about what a man would do/believe for his own child.
  • Awesome

    By Sarabear094
    I watched the TV show.! Loved it so far, so thought to read the book. It was amazing.!
  • Loved It

    By Audit queen
    I did not see the ending coming. I went back and reread the last five pages several times. Wow! I really enjoyed the book. I would love to see the movie.
  • Mind blowing

    By Gianna1067
    If you like twist endings you’ll absolutely adore this book. I couldn’t put my iPad down for a second, and I’m glad I didn’t. The characters are well thought out, and each obviously have their own flaws but that’s what makes them human. 9/10!
  • Pass

    By leahkirsten
    Boring and depressing
  • Amazing book

    By Lacyfamily2012
    Wasn’t sure when I started reading but ended up really liking it.
  • Defending Jacob

    By scubajudy
    An amazing book! Could not read it fast enough. The ending caught me completely by surprise! Recommend it!
  • Top 5 books ever

    By Timmy's Take
    Gripping from beginning to end
  • Absolutely enthralling!

    By Canoe ski
    Love this book just amazing writing I was questioning until the end!
  • Great crime thriller + courtroom drama!

    By KatieBower
    I loved this book. It worked really well as a crime thriller & a courtroom drama, bc it unfolded the events of the crime as it happened in the past. The narrator is the DA & Jacob's father. I appreciated how the various court-specific vocabulary was defined in a way that felt natural, not like I was being talked down to. I definitely recommend this book!!!