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Legal Drama, Legal Fiction, Crime Fiction, Mafia Fiction, Mob Stories, Courtroom Drama, Legal Romance

The Plea Bargain
by Phil Messina

Phil Vinci grew up in an underprivileged neighborhood of East Philadelphia, where crime and hopelessness seemed to be the controlling forces of everyday life. Fast money and the sense of belonging were the greatest temptations for a kid in those days. It seemed he was well on his way to following in the footsteps of his peers. However, something very significant occurred in his young life, which changed all that. Phil pulled away, managing to turn his life around. With great determination and conviction, he was able to get into law school. Circumstances led him to his first job as an Assistant District Attorney at the Pennsylvania State Attorney's office, where his mentor would give him every opportunity to shine. He seemed to find his calling, and the love of his life in Caroline Baxter, a pit-bull of a prosecutor. But, as fate would have it, his past catches up to him before too long. His old neighborhood friends, who had kept on that original path, come calling - pressuring him to help them out and tempting him with riches. He is torn between his old neighborhood loyalties, with the life of luxury his friends promise, and his devotion to his profession. As he tries to do the right thing, he soon discovers that everything is not always so black and white in his world. The young assistant D.A. struggles with these notions, trying desperately to balance the two; all the while falling deeper in love. All of it seems to be coming to a head and it may just cost him everything; including Baxter's love.

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I grew up in a neighborhood and under circumstances which were very similar to those described in the book. I was born of hard working, law abiding immigrant parents, who only wanted the best for me, and for my siblings. They tried their very best to instill those values in us. After more than 35 years as an attorney, I am still working as a prosecuting attorney. Although the story is fictional, I have drawn on personal experience to tell the story of some of the hardships and struggles facing those young minds that want to pull themselves out of dead end lives. Of course, it is not an easy task; the road is filled with curves, danger, and temptation. This is my first fictional novel. I hope that the main character portrayed therein, and the conflicts he wrestles with will touch you.


Phil Messina

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