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  • Writer's pictureJudith D Collins

Last Resort

Joe Dillard Legal Thriller #10

Narrator: Tim Campbell

Audible Studios

ISBN: 978-1944083212

Publisher: Phoenix Flying Inc

Publication Date: 06/01/2023

Format: Paperback

My Rating: 5 Stars (ARC)

The New Joe Dillard Novel.

A young girl vanishes without a trace in the dead of night.

Was her menacing absentee father involved? Or did something even more sinister occur?

In the tenth installment of the best-selling Joe Dillard series, Joe finds himself turning 50 and on the brink of despair.

His involvement in his law practice has tapered to the point of near retirement. He spends his days with his wife, Caroline, who is finally succumbing to the ravages of cancer after a decade-long battle.

His son, Jack, is struggling with alcohol abuse and self-loathing after accidentally killing a young mother while protecting the woman he hopes to marry. Joe is nearing the end of his rope.

When the girl goes missing, Joe learns she is a member of Jack’s little league team. Her disappearance derails his already teetering son and starts a ticking clock. If she’s not found within 48 hours, the chances of recovering her alive dwindle to nearly zero. Joe knows this, so Caroline charges him with finding her.

As the investigation ramps up, law enforcement quickly zeroes in on a likely perpetrator. The identity of the prime suspect hits closer to home than Joe could have possibly imagined, adding frantic urgency to his quest to find the girl.

My Review

Scott & JD Pratt return following Blood is Black (5 Stars—Presley Carter #1) with the highly anticipated popular Joe Dillard Series (#10), LAST RESORT —The most emotional and action-packed thriller yet! Joe is desperate to save his dying wife, a kidnapped girl from sex trafficking, and his son in jail, being set up for murder while feeling responsible for it all.

First, thank you, Dylan and family, for sharing this poignant story with Scott's readers. Scott and Kristy would be proud you are carrying on their legacy! With the help of your family, ghostwriters, and all who had a part in this undertaking, thank you—LAST RESORT exceeded all expectations and then some! Please, do not let this be the last one in this series.

"I have long feared that my sins would return to visit me, and the cost is more than I can bear."

—Benjamin Martin (character), The Patriot

OK, guys, when I am passionate about a book, the review is long! I want everyone to read this book. Checks all the boxes for me.

Joe Dillard, attorney is turning 50. He has cut back on his time with the law practice, allowing his son and fiancee to take over most cases.

He has a lot to be grateful for. However, his loving wife, Caroline, has had enough of chemo and her courageous fight with cancer. She announces to Joe and the family she will not be going back on chemo, and hospice is being called in. Joe is devastated and wants to spend every moment with his beloved wife.

However, things get complicated five days later, and his wife instructs him to find this girl and clear their son's name.

There is a reason she knows Joe must find this girl before it is too late. He witnessed his older sister, Sarah, being raped by their uncle, Raymond, when he was only 8 yrs old, and he could not stop it. It still haunts him to this day.

Sarah owns a restaurant and has a young daughter, Grace. They are close.

Abby Pruitt is only 11 yrs old. A lovely girl. She is innocent. A rough life. They live in a trailer away from town, and her mom, Verna, stays high, drunk, and on drugs most of the time—her father, Greg, has been in prison for all sorts of things, takes bets on his kid's games, meth kitchens, criminal activity, and more. Kidnapped by sex trafficking.

Did either of the parents play a part in Abby's kidnapping, serving her to wolves and predators?

Jack Dillard, attorney (Joe's son) in practice together, is Abby's baseball coach and mentor. She is a star. Jack is soon to be married to Charlie, an attorney in the same law firm.

Abby has been kidnapped by monsters pretending they were from social services. Now Abby finds herself a part of a sex trafficking ring. How will she escape these madmen? She is an innocent little girl.

The people responsible for the sex trafficking ring are intelligent, heavily connected, politicians, senators, wealthy, and have done a great job setting up Jack as the one who took her, incriminating evidence and falsified videos. Now he is in jail for murder.

Jack had experienced some difficult times (former book) when he had to murder someone to protect himself and his soon-to-be wife. He was drinking more than usual, and now this.

There are people on Monster's payroll that will have him killed if needed while in jail tormenting him. Someone is out for revenge. A former enemy of Joe Dillard's that wants to take down him and his family. REVENGE.

Joe must help Abby and his son Jack. In the past, being impulsive, Joe has been known to take the law into his own hands for justice. He is about to do the same when he goes rogue, but Carolina speaks to him—telling him to slow down and think things through with a level head.

Pratt ratchets up the suspense and tension with Joe going rogue, trying to track down the sex trafficking ring and save Abby before it is too late. How will he escape?

Two emergent situations, side by side, require a hundred percent of Joe's attention. Now he was at forty-perfect capacity, more than he could handle, but he had promised his dying wife.

Meanwhile, on the home front, Joe's daughter Lilly, soon to be daughter in law (attorney-Charlie), and Sarah (Joe's sister), with the help of Arlene (former strip club owner)—form the Jonesborough Women's Investigative Committee—with the support of Leon Bates, Sherriff (Arlene and Leon are a riot together), Stony a PI, Jim Beaumont, attorney, the FBI, and more are working diligently to clear Jack, find Abby and Joe and gather information against the bad guys.

Human trafficking does not remain in one place long. Joe is out on his own and not communicating. He has to save Abby and his son. He must follow the trail. However, someone is providing bread crumbs leading him to slaughter.

Influential and wealthy men and senators are paying people to bring in young, innocent girls and boys against their will for these sick predators, disguised as golf tournaments and weekend entertainment, and discarding them.

Alternating from Joe, the family back home, Jack in jail, the predators, and Abby in her prison with other gals, the stakes are high, and the clock is TICKING in a race against time. The brutal predators they are tracking are ready to kill in Black Canyon, Arizona, near Sedona, to keep their secrets hidden.

Who will survive?

Fueled with high-adrenaline, action-packed, well-developed characters with plenty of emotions and twists, LAST RESORT is a must-read for Joe Dillard and Scott Pratt fans—and new readers.

STELLAR! A thoroughly engrossing crime thriller, LAST RESORT offers plenty of shocking scenes and clever surprises. Not only is this a well-written knock-out legal crime thriller, but it has loads of HEART. There is a lot of soul-searching on Joe's part (more philosophical); trust me, you will shed a tear or two.

PS I loved the Lake Norman, NC reference, where I am from—for fans of Grisham, Connelly, and Aime Austin.

Tommy is just one of the heroes of this nail-biting crime thriller—I LOVED the EPILOGUE! I am sure other readers and fans will agree that the Joe Dillard family is part of our family, and I hope it continues.

Now, please do NOT let Joe Dillard end! He is only 50 yrs old with many years left. I would like to see more, and maybe a spin-off with Jack and Charlie with cameo appearances from Joe, Rio (dog), Lily, Sarah, Grace, Abby, and always Leon & Erlene. Maybe Leon should be a PI, and he and Joe can work together.

This book was very well done and seamless. Scott would be proud. Thank you, Dylan and the family, for keeping her dad's legacy alive. Looking forward to more from Joe and cannot wait for the next Presley Carter!

"Every man's life ends the same way. It is only the details of how he lived and how he died that distinguish one man from another." —Ernest Hemingway

I loved this so much! I purchased the e-book, paperback, and the audio narrated by the fabulous Tim Campbell. He is genuinely Joe Dillard (no one else can play this part like Tim!) I have listened to every one of them. OUTSTANDING!

As you can tell, I adored this book! Crime legal thrillers are my favorite, and have read all the Joe Dillard Series. Did you know there is a hardcover, Collector's Edition available? I have ordered and cannot wait to add to my collection. A classic for every home library.

Someone needs to pick up this series for a TV series!

Sorry for the delay in posting; been swamped with my website client's work.

@JudithDCollins | #JDCMustReadBooks

Pub Date: June 1, 2023

My Rating: 5 Stars ++


“Pratt’s richly developed characters are vivid and believable, especially the strong Southern women who fight their male-dominated culture from behind a façade of vulnerability.”—Publishers Weekly

Praise from Amazon Reviewers for SCOTT PRATT


"Joe Dillard is a worthy, more down-to-earth alternative to the heroes of Child, Thor, Flynn et al."

"If you like John Grisham or Lee Child (Jack Reacher series), you'll like Scott Pratt's Joe Dillard series."

"Fabulous read. If you like John Grisham, James Patterson, Lee Child, John Sanford, etc. you will love Scott Pratt."

"I had read all the Harry Bosch, Mickey Haller and Jack Reacher books at least twice and was looking for something along the same lines, and I must say I was pleasantly surprised with Joe Dillard, who turned out to be everything one wanted, and more! I am on Book 3 now. If you like action, detective, and lawyer-type novels, Joe Dillard is for you!"

"Joe Dillard is a kinder, gentler 'could have been' Jack Reacher!!!!!"

"Scott Pratt has created a character worthy of movies. Not since Jake Brigance has an attorney made such a great debut. Read this. It's fantastic."

"As good as Grisham."

"Dillard is a great character, on the order of Grisham's Jake Brigance. And who would have thunk that setting a novel in rural Tennessee would be as enthralling as it turned out to be."

"I'm so GLAD I happened across Scott Pratt's Joe Dillard series. "An Innocent Client" is a really good, well-written story and I'm looking forward with much pleasure to reading the whole series. Highly recommended for fans of courtroom intrigue and for readers like me who are fans of good-guy protagonists like Robert B. Parker's Spenser, Michael Connelly's Harry Bosch, J.A. Jance's J.P Beaumont, and William J. Coughlin's Charley Sloan."

"I'm a Bosch fan and got a suggestion to read "Dillard" series and bit. Damn good reading. As per another review I read, I would agree that the characters are somewhat dysfunctional, and while that can sometimes turn me off, the storyline and character depth overcame that for me. Started with Dilliard #1 so excited to keep reading!"

"A quick read with a character who has his own problems but manages to overcome them. Joe Dillard is to defense attorneys as Harry Bosch is to police detectives."

"Fast and interesting read. I love the cynical main character. Fans of Harry Bosch will love this book."

"Loved the characters. As entertaining as my favorite Grisham thriller. Recommend to anyone that likes Grisham or Michael Connelly's Harry Bosch."

"Very smart, gripping until the end."

"I was looking for a new series and came across this one. The story was really good, the main character seemed very real as he dealt with pressure, family, his job, and terrible events from his past. There was good humor and some nice twists to keep you guessing. I will certainly purchase more of the Joe Dillard series, and the price was another big plus. If you are a Grisham, Lincoln Lawyer, or Bosch fan, this is a good addition to your collection."

"Very enjoyable and well-written book. I enjoyed it as much as Michael Connelly's 'Harry Bosch series. I will be reading Pratt's next book for sure."

About the Author

SCOTT PRATT is a Wall Street Journal bestselling author whose books have sold more than six million copies. He was born in South Haven, Michigan, and grew up in Jonesborough, Tennessee. He was a veteran of the United States Air Force and earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from East Tennessee State University and a Doctor of Jurisprudence from the University of Tennessee. WEBSITE


An Innocent Client

In Good Faith

Injustice for All

Reasonable Fear

Conflict of Interest

Blood Money

A Crime of Passion

Judgment Cometh (And That Right Soon)

Due Process

Last Resort (Coming Summer 2023)BOOKS IN THE DARREN STREET SERIES

Justice Redeemed

Justice Burning

Justice Lost


Blood is Black


Deep Threat

Divine Strike


Break Point

Out of Bounds


The Sins of the Mother


River on Fire


An Elephant's Standing in There

A Ride on a Cloud



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