Killing Time: One Man's Race to Stop an Execution

Front Cover
Random House Australia, 2010 - Capital punishment - 273 pages
"How does it feel to defend a serial killer? To tell a young man that he will be executed in fifteen minutes' time? To explain to your five-year-old son that you're late home again because you couldn't help someone at work? To realise that a death row convict whose life you hold in your hands is actually innocent? As David R. Dow reveals in this haunting yet gripping memoir, a life spent trying to save the lives of guilty murderers in Houston, Texas, where 99% of death row appeals are rejected, is intensely unforgiving. Yet this routine of resignation -- to the fate of both his clients and his young family, whom he can feel slipping away from him by the day -- takes on a new and startling urgency when he becomes convinced that one of his clients, whose execution is just weeks away, is actually innocent. The system he has to persuade of this is a corrupt and hopelessly ineffective one, involving lawyers who fall asleep during their clients' trials, judges who are hostile to the very idea of justice, and executioners who rely on inmates for moral support. Yet to lose this fight, which as he knows is nearly inevitable, would be to watch an innocent man be murdered. Written with sea

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - gayla.bassham - LibraryThing

Best book I've read so far this year. Granted, it's only February, but still. It is a memoir written by a lawyer who defends death penalty cases in Texas. I can't imagine a more frustrating job. He ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Darcia - LibraryThing

The Autobiography of an Execution is a compelling look at death penalty cases from the perspective of a death penalty lawyer. One of the things that makes this book unique is that Dow doesn't focus on ... Read full review

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About the author (2010)

David R. Dow is the University Distinguished Professor at the University of Houston Law Center, and the litigation director at the Texas Defender Service, a nonprofit legal aid corporation that represents death-row inmates. As an appellate lawyer, he has represented more than one hundred death-row inmates over the past twenty years. A graduate of Rice and Yale, Dow is the editor (with Mark Dow) of MACHINERY OF DEATH, and the author of EXECUTED ON A TECHNICALITY- LETHAL INJUSTICE ON AMERICA S DEATH ROW and AMERICA S PROPHETS- HOW JUDICIAL ACTIVISM MAKES AMERICA GREAT, as well as a treatise on contract law. Dow is also the author of more than one hundred professional articles and essays, and his work has appeared in many popular publications, including the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Christian Science Monitor, the Progressive, the Texas Observer, the Dallas Morning News, and the Houston Chronicle. He resides with his wife, their son, and their dog in Houston.

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