Coming from Phillip Margolin (author of the Amanda Jaffe series), the Robin Lockwood series is a legal procedural thriller series full of twisty cases.
The story is about Robin Lockwood. She’s a former MMA fighter and, at the beginning of the series, is a young lawyer who has just left a clerkship at the Oregon Supreme Court to work for Regina Barrister, a legendary criminal defense attorney. As the series progresses, Robin makes a name for herself.
How to Read The Robin Lockwood Series in Order?
Every entry in the Robin Lockwood book series works as a standalone story, but the lives of the different characters evolve from one novel to the other.
- The Third Victim – A woman stumbles onto a dark road in rural Oregon―tortured, battered, and bound. She tells a horrific story about being kidnapped, then tortured, until she finally managed to escape. She was the lucky one―two other women, with similar burns and bruises, were found dead. The surviving victim identifies the house where she was held captive and the owner, Alex Mason―a prominent local attorney―is arrested. Regina Barrister, a legendary criminal defense attorney, agrees to take on the seemingly impossible task of defending Alex Mason. Robin Lockwood, a young lawyer and former MMA fighter, has just left a clerkship at the Oregon Supreme Court to work for Regina Barrister. The Alex Mason trial is her first big one, a likely death penalty case, and she’s second chair to Regina.
- The Perfect Alibi (2019) – A young woman accuses a prominent local college athlete of rape. Convicted with the help of undisputable DNA evidence, the athlete swears his innocence and threatens both his lawyer and his accuser as he’s sent to prison. Not long after, there’s another rape and the DNA test shows that the same person committed both rapes—which is seemingly impossible since the man convicted of the first rape was in prison at the time of the second one. Now, the convicted athlete, joined by a new lawyer, is granted a new trial and bail. Shortly thereafter, his original lawyer disappears and his law partner is murdered. Robin Lockwood is representing the victim of the first rape in her civil lawsuit against her rapist, who is now convinced the rapist is stalking her and trying to intimidate her.
- A Reasonable Doubt (2020) – One of Regina’s former clients, Robert Chesterfield, shows up in the law office with an odd request—he’s seeking help from his old attorney in acquiring patent protection for an illusion. Chesterfield is a professional magician of some renown and he has a major new trick he’s about to debut. This is out of the scope of the law firm’s expertise, but when Robin Lockwood looks into his previous relationship with the firm, she learns that twenty years ago he was arrested for two murders, one attempted murder, and was involved in the potentially suspicious death of his very rich wife. Now, decades later, he debuts his new trick—only to disappear at the end. He’s a man with more than one dark past and many enemies—is his disappearance tied to one of the many people who have good reason to hate him? Was he killed and his body disposed of, or did he use his considerable skills to engineer his own disappearance?
- A Matter of Life and Death (2021) – Joe Lattimore, homeless and trying desperately to provide for his young family, agrees to fight in a no-holds-barred illegal bout, only to have his opponent die. Lattimore now finds himself at the mercy of the fight’s organizers who blackmail him into burglarizing a house. However, when he breaks in, he finds a murdered woman on the floor and the police have received an anonymous tip naming him the murderer. Robin Lockwood agrees to take on his defense.
- The Darkest Place (2022) – As a favor to a judge, Robin Lockwood takes on the pro bono defense of a reprehensible defendant charged with even more reprehensible crimes. But what she doesn’t know—what she can’t know—is how this one decision, this one case, will wreak complete devastation on her life and plans. As she recovers from those consequences, Robin heads home to her small town of Elk Grove and the bosom of her family. As she tries to recuperate, a unique legal challenge presents itself—Marjorie Loman, a surrogate, is accused of kidnapping the baby she carried for another couple, and assaulting that couple in the process. There’s no question that she committed these actions but that’s not the same as being guilty of the crime.
- Murder at Black Oaks (2022) – Robin Lockwood is summoned by retired District Attorney Francis Melville to meet with him at Black Oaks, the manor he owns up in the Oregon mountains. The manor has an interesting history – originally built in 1628 in England, there’s a murderous legend and curse attached to the mansion. Melville, however, wants Lockwood’s help in a legal matter – righting a wrongful conviction from his days as a DA. A young man, Jose Alvarez, was convicted of murdering his girlfriend only for Melville, years later when in private practice, to have a client of his admit to the murder and to frame the man Melville convicted. Unable to reveal what he knew due to attorney-client confidence, Melville now wants Lockwood’s help in getting that conviction overturned.
- Betrayal (2023) – Robin Lockwood is now a prominent defense attorney in Portland, Oregon but a decade ago, she was a ranked and rising MMA fighter. Her career came to a quick end when she was knocked out and concussed in the first round by Mandy Kerrigan, a much more talented fighter. Now the situation couldn’t be more different, with Kerrigan on her last legs, her career nearly over, arrested for the quadruple murder of the entire Finch family…and Kerrigan’s only possible friend is the attorney she beat so many years ago.