Book Review: Unconvicted by Olly Jarvis.

31 Mar
Book Review: Unconvicted by Olly Jarvis.


I have unashamedly made it very obvious here and on Twitter that Olly Jarvis is my all time favourite Author. This is a little weird as he had only published two books that I had read (before this recent one). But I was so engrossed and loved both previous books so much, I just wanted to keep raving and let everyone I could know that I loved his books and they should read them too. So, you can imagine that I was elated when I heard Olly had written another one. Unconvicted is just as good as his previous two books, and so far is my top book of the year! As were his previous 2 in 2015 and 2016! (You see how much of a fan I am!).

Death By Dangerous – July 2015 Goodreads.   My Review.




Cut Throat Defence – October 2016.  Goodreads.   Author Interview.


Now for Olly Jarvis’ most recent book Unconvicted which was published by Canelo on January 29th 2018.


In a razor-sharp legal thriller, Jack Kowalski must win two challenging trials to save his reputation and his career
Junior barrister Jack Kowalski is crushed. His client Timothy Smart appears to have committed a monstrous crime while on bail – a bail application Jack fought hard to win.

When a high-profile Polish footballer is charged with rape and demands a fellow countryman represent him, Jack must overcome his guilt and get back to work. Before long he takes on a second case, a GBH for instructing solicitor Lara Panassai, who Jack remains desperate to impress. But neither case is what it seems, and Jack will face an extraordinary uphill battle to see that justice is done.


Published January 29th 2018 by Canelo

My Thoughts:

Unconvicted is set in Manchester, England. I love legal thrillers, it is my favourite genre at the moment. So I love it when I find a legal thriller that is set in U.K. Although, I enjoy American based ones too, I like that I can relate to the areas and a bit of the legal talk. However, whatever your nationality, if you like legal thrillers, this is a must read. Young barrister Jack Kowalski is relatively new to his job and still has that anxiety at being in a courtroom. This is the second in the Jack Kowalski series, though its not essential to read the first before Unconvicted. Jack takes on high profile cases and along with solicitor Lara. ( a great relationship between these two), they must find justice. However, all is not as it seems. 

Jarvis writes from his knowledge and experiences at working within criminal law, and this shines through in his writing. The legal talk is interesting, accurate and believable. We are drawn in to Jack’s world of how he can defend criminals, how he has to think outside the box and despite what he may or may not believe about his clients, give them the best and fairest defence within his ability. From reading this book, my eyes were opened to the challenges faced by defence attorneys. One of the quotes by Jack shows the difficulties and mind messers of being a criminal defence lawyer.

“You have to work on the basis that the unconvicted are always innocent unless proved otherwise. ” – This made the book so exciting and interesting. Are Jack’s clients innocent or guilty? Does it matter? Should it matter? And how does Jack work to defend his high profile clients, while also having to face the alledged victims of the crimes? 

Jarvis knows human compassion, feelings and assumptions and this is so evident in his writing. He writes from knowledge, experience, imagination and a brilliant legal mind. 

The pace of this book is set just right, not too fast but in no way slow. Olly Jarvis is always a writer to keep you turning the pages and wanting more. The short chapters meant that when I said to myself just one more chapter, I could get away with a few more than I intended, and a few late nights were because of this book.I can’t recommend this book, and Olly’s other books high enough. Unconvicted is my top book of the year so far…..and although its only April, I don’t see that changing……unless he writes another book? 







Posted by on March 31, 2018 in Books


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14 responses to “Book Review: Unconvicted by Olly Jarvis.

  1. Lindsay | Bookboodle

    March 31, 2018 at 10:16 am

    I’m a huge fan of the legal thriller too, I only ever used to read John Grisham, but I totally get what you mean about understanding the legal jargon.
    I read Death by Dangerous which I really enjoyed but have yet to continue with the series!
    Thanks for linking up with #TalkoftheTown x

    • chocolatepages

      March 31, 2018 at 11:58 am

      If you read and enjoyed Death by Dangerous, then I’m sure you will love these books too. Actually I haven’t read any John Grisham but I think I will love them too.

  2. kathleenjowitt

    March 31, 2018 at 2:21 pm

    ‘Just one more chapter’… yes, that’s a trap that I often fall into!

    • chocolatepages

      March 31, 2018 at 2:36 pm

      I think its a trap many of us book lovers fall into. Lack of sleep can often be blamed on great Authors!

  3. Florence

    March 31, 2018 at 8:27 pm

    I am an absolute fan of Olly Jarvis having read both of his previous books – Unconvicted is definitely on the list for one of my next reads.

    • chocolatepages

      April 1, 2018 at 11:55 pm

      If you loved Olly’s previous books, I’m sure you will love this one. I would love to hear your thoughts on Unconvicted if / when you read it. I definitely recommend it, its the best book I have read in a while. Thank you for commenting Florence 😉

  4. shazjera

    April 2, 2018 at 10:12 am

    I’m a fan of short chapters too Amanda. Certainly builds the suspense 🙂 Thanks for linking #TalkoftheTown

    • chocolatepages

      April 15, 2018 at 12:24 pm

      It certainly did build the suspense with the short chapters Shaz. Thanks for your comments and hosting ToTT.

  5. stephaniesbookreviews

    April 4, 2018 at 10:15 pm

    I haven’t read anything by him before, but I’m definitely going to check him out!

    • chocolatepages

      April 5, 2018 at 6:06 pm

      He is definetly worth checking out. In my opinion Olly is an amazing author. I hope he writes another book soon.

  6. BrizzleLass

    April 14, 2018 at 4:34 pm

    This is totally the tyoe of book Hubs devours, I will pio it on his wish list while he isn’t looking 😉 #tott

    • chocolatepages

      April 14, 2018 at 10:17 pm

      I love these kind of books, and Olly Jarvis is a brilliant Author. If your Hubby loves this kind of read, he would love all of Olly’s books. Thank you for your comments.

  7. Greg

    April 14, 2018 at 8:17 pm

    Sounds fabulous! I like too that he explores the dilemma defense attys face- I went to law school for a year and my criminal law class was fascinating because we discussed that very thing. How and why you defend even if they are a terrible person? I love short chapters that keep you reading too. 🙂

    Nice review.

    • chocolatepages

      April 14, 2018 at 10:16 pm

      Thank you Greg. Criminal law class sounds very interesting, I wonder what your thoughts would be if you read this book.


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