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Title: The Great Divide
Author: T. Davis Bunn
Number of Pages: (450 pages)
Publication date: Wednesday April 6, 2011
Publisher: WaterBrook
ASIN: B003FCVE6E
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Book Review

When attorney Marcus Glenwood resigns from a prestigious corporate law firm to retreat to a small town in North Carolina and rebuild his life after a devastating personal tragedy, he suddenly finds himself in the biggest and most emotionally difficult case of his career.
Fragile and spiritually wounded, Glenwood is introduced to Alma and Austin Hall, whose daughter Gloria has disappeared in China while investigating the slave-like practices of New Horizons, the world's largest manufacturer of sports shoes and athletic gear. Persuaded by Alma's pleading, and their obvious distress, Marcus accepts the case.

No one, including Marcus himself, can believe how quickly his investigation untangles a web of deceit that stretches from Washington , D.C., to Europe and Asia and back to his own North Carolina backyard. With the power to obstruct, manipulate, intimidate, injure, and eliminate, the giant multinational sports company New Horizons has never lost a case. But they underestimate Marcus Glenwood.

Step by cautious step Glenwood moves forward to uncover the horrifying truth about New Horizons, Gloria Hall, and ultimately himself.


From the Trade Paperback edition.

Amazon.com Review

Gloria Hall has gone missing in China, where she went to investigate and expose slave labor conditions. The prison camp she ends up in is a factory for a big American corporation. Marcus Glenwood is a formerly successful corporate lawyer who has retreated to a house on the wrong side of the tracks after an auto accident in which his two small children are killed. Gloria's sacrifice and Marcus's redemption are the larger themes of this moving and engrossing novel of international trade practices and personal salvation.

Marcus agrees to represent Gloria's parents in a legal battle to hold New Horizons, the world's largest manufacturer of sports shoes and athletic gear, accountable for the disappearance of their daughter. But his investigation is hampered from the beginning by his former colleagues, who represent New Horizons, and by powerful lobbyists and associates of the Chinese government, who will not hesitate to use any means possible--including murder--to keep their gruesome practices a secret. With his resources limited to a canny retired judge and the mysterious woman who was Gloria's closest friend, Marcus sets out on a David and Goliath-like battle against a mighty corporation with powerful political backers and corrupt trading partners determined to stop him.

In the wake of increasing political protest against the abuse of workers in third world countries who manufacture goods sold by American companies, the outlines of Bunn's plot are particularly timely. The theme of the burned-out lawyer taking on a mighty corporation and its anything-for-a-win legal minions, however, has been used by many others, most notably John Grisham, for nearly a decade. What makes this novel exceptionally powerful is its deep spiritual core. The scene in which Marcus painfully relives the accident that shattered his world and confronts the loving presence of the only force that can absolve his guilt and heal his soul is remarkable: "There within the church the shadow formed more clearly still, gliding on slippered feet. The shroud it carried wrapped him up so tightly that Marcus felt his hold on the church and the comforting noise slip away until he could scarcely hear anything save the frantic beating of his terrified heart. He sat there, trapped and helpless to do anything save observe the approach of his own eternal night." The secondary characters are as well drawn as the protagonists, and Bunn's writing has moments of real beauty and clarity. While the plot doesn't move as quickly as it might, and the sympathetic judge who presides over the courtroom leaves herself wide open to appellate review, neither detracts from the powerful resonance of this well written novel. --Jane Adams

Product Description

When attorney Marcus Glenwood resigns from a prestigious corporate law firm to retreat to a small town in North Carolina and rebuild his life after a devastating personal tragedy, he suddenly finds himself in the biggest and most emotionally difficult case of his career.
Fragile and spiritually wounded, Glenwood is introduced to Alma and Austin Hall, whose daughter Gloria has disappeared in China while investigating the slave-like practices of New Horizons, the world's largest manufacturer of sports shoes and athletic gear. Persuaded by Alma's pleading, and their obvious distress, Marcus accepts the case.

No one, including Marcus himself, can believe how quickly his investigation untangles a web of deceit that stretches from Washington , D.C., to Europe and Asia and back to his own North Carolina backyard. With the power to obstruct, manipulate, intimidate, injure, and eliminate, the giant multinational sports company New Horizons has never lost a case. But they underestimate Marcus Glenwood.

Step by cautious step Glenwood moves forward to uncover the horrifying truth about New Horizons, Gloria Hall, and ultimately himself.


From the Trade Paperback edition.

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