Author Interview: Ken Malovos, Author of 'Sweet Justice' #interview

Ken Malovos has been practicing law in Sacramento for over forty years. He spent twelve years with the Public Defender’s Office and twenty-five years as a business litigator. He now serves full-time as a mediator and arbitrator. He has written three previous Mike Zorich novels and has been recognized by Chanticleer Book Reviews as a First Prize Category Winner in the legal genre of the Mystery and Mayhem competition and as a finalist in the Thriller and Suspense competition.
You can visit Ken’s website at

Welcome, Ken!  Your new legal thriller sounds thrilling! Can you tell us how you came up with the idea?               
Ken: I had some unanswered questions left over from my previous novel, One Night In Amboise. So, I needed to answer those questions. At the same time, I wanted to explore the murder of someone who does the same thing as I do. I work as an arbitrator and mediator and frequently find myself alone in my office late at night and have wondered what evil might happen. I try to answer that question in this novel.

Can you tell us a little about the main characters?
Ken: My main character and protagonist, Michael Zorich, is common to all my novels. He is an experienced trial lawyer, who tries to solve cases while dealing with his own personal challenges. He has a serious drinking problem and lost his wife to cancer several years ago. He has a partner, Denny Grantham, who works with him sometimes in their amateur sleuthing.
In this novel, there are two judges, Judge Hansen who was tried (but not convicted) for murder in the first degree in my last novel and retired Judge Tilson who is murdered late at night while working as an arbitrator. They each have their own issues. Michael Zorich tries to find out who really killed the woman that Judge Hansen was accused of murdering and who killed Judge Tilson. He is aided by Judge Tilson’s daughter.

They say all books of fiction have at least one pivotal point where the reader just can’t put the book down. What is one of the pivotal points in your book?
Ken: I would like to think that the decision by Judge Tilson’s daughter, Kathy Lamb, to try and find her father’s killer is one such turning point. She has absolutely no experience as a private investigator but she is determined. She uses all kinds of ruses to talk to potential suspects and find out what they know. .
Do you proofread and edit your work on your own or pay someone to do it for you?
Ken: I do both. I try to proof read everything I write, as I write it and later, when it is finished. Then I turn it over to some pros, who always find numerous errors or inconsistencies that I missed. I am always amazed at how many little details that professional editors find.

Do you believe a book cover plays an important role in the selling process?
Ken: I do. Book covers are very important as they give the potential reader the first clue about your book. If you want to attract new readers, you need to use everything at your disposal. I think the book cover is one of the most important assets you can present to the potential reader.

What did you want to become when you were a kid?
Ken: I first wanted to be a Catholic priest. In fact, I spent three years at a high school seminary before deciding that it was not for me. Then I decided to become a lawyer. My mother told me I was too young to go to a seminary but I persisted. Looking back, she was right. I was too young.

Do your novels carry a message?
Ken: They do, although I don’t try to be preachy about it. This one has a message about the violence from guns.

Is there anything you’d like to tell your readers and fans?
Ken: I hope my readers will find this book and all my books to be a pleasurable escape from their normal lives and that they learn something about the legal profession in the process. I have always enjoyed a good story, a page turner, and that is what I hope I have brought to my readers.
About the Book:

Author: Ken Malovos
Publisher: Independent
Pages: 461
Genre: Legal Mystery

Judge Robert Tilson is a retired judge now working exclusively as a private mediator and arbitrator. One night he is murdered. The police focus on criminal defendants who appeared before him and past clients. They also are interested in litigants who have appeared before him when he was serving as an arbitrator. But progress is slow and the judge’s daughter, Kathy Lamb, decides to investigate on her own. She makes friends with David Powell, who is quite upset with Judge Tilson for an intended arbitration award that favors his siblings in the division of their parents’ estate. David is acquitted through the efforts of Mike Zorich, trial lawyer. But Kathy finds out that her father had been carrying on an affair with his court clerk for many years and she suspects the clerk’s husband is the one who killed Judge Tilson. She is right.

Meanwhile, Judge Jim Hansen is still dealing with the ordeal of being accused, arrested and charged with murder in the first degree of Alicia Obregon, a woman who had been blackmailing him over an incident in Amboise, France, 30 years ago, when he was accused of raping a fellow student. The jury could not make up their mind and eventually the prosecution decides not to retry him but to dismiss the charges. The other judges in the courthouse shun him. He seeks help with a counselor. He has not been truthful at his trial or with his wife. Further, he threw a case before he became a judge, when he was a deputy district attorney because of the fear of blackmail from Alicia Obregon. Anthony Obregon, Alicia’s husband is then tried for her murder but he is acquitted. It turns out that the husband of the woman who made the charge of rape against Judge Hansen 30 years ago is responsible for Alicia’s murder.

Mike Zorich is in the center of the effort to find the real killers,who are eventually arrested, tried and convicted. Anthony Obregon is the connection between the two cases as he was accused of killing his own wife and he was asked to kill Judge Tilson, but refused to do so. His information and the efforts of Kathy Lamb and Mike Zorich lead to the righteous killers. 


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