I finally decided to give four stars only because the justice and the fairness play such an important part of the novel. The legal discourse is superb, and the presentation of the life in prison seems plausible, and most importantly, it is a novel with a very significant literary reminiscence.
It is definitely a book written by a Conservative, and as a liberal, you constantly pick up the clues and the messages that go against your convictions. But (I hate the conjunction at the beginning of the sentence:-))it is also a book written by a British conservative, and it is a sober relief to read about those ideas, especially if you are sick and tired of the neo-Con bigots across the Atlantic ocean.
It is definitely a book with religious undertones, but being an agnostic I still share the messages this book postulates, namely the spirit of those rules of peaceful co-existence – charity of spirit and charity with money. The religious messages and episodes are of a mundane nature, not of a proselytizing nature. Their presence is to confirm the idea of fairness and justice, and not the doctrine of ‘the winner takes it all’. All in all, a refreshing outlook what a suspenseful novel could be even with the conservative ideas at its heart.