Category Archives: The Girl in the Glass Box

Review: The Girl in the Glass Box by James Grippando

Title: The Girl in the Glass Box by James Grippando
Jack Swytek Series Book Fifteen
Publisher: Harper
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery, Suspense
Length: 368 pages
Book Rating: B+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through Edelweiss


Miami attorney Jack Swyteck lands in the heart of the contentious immigration debate when he takes on the heart-wrenching case of an undocumented immigrant who fled to America to protect her daughter and save herself, in this timely and pulse-pounding thriller that explores the stories behind the headlines from New York Times bestselling author James Grippando, winner of the Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction.

Julia Rodriguez and her teenage daughter Beatriz escaped bloodthirsty gangs, random violence and, Julia’s abusive husband back in El Salvador. Arriving in Miami, mother and daughter struggled to carve their own piece of the American dream. While life in the States is hard, it is safer, until Julia’s rejects her boss’s unwanted sexual advances. Suddenly—thanks to an “anonymous” tip to U. S. immigration authorities—she is arrested, locked in detention with criminals, and slated for deportation. Jack’s only viable legal move to save her is asylum—a long shot that’s become nearly impossible in today’s charged political climate.

When Julia and Beatriz made the perilous trek north to freedom, they thought they’d left the danger behind them. But now, even Miami isn’t safe. A ruthless enemy may have tracked them to south Florida and is biding time, patiently waiting to strike.

In a case where the stakes have never been higher, Jack Sywteck may not be able to save his client—even if he wins.


The Girl in the Glass Box by James Grippando is a poignant mystery which features a timely and socially relevant storyline. Although this newest release is the fifteenth installment in the Jack Swytek series, it can be read as a standalone.

When attorney Jack Swytek’s grandmother asks him for a favor, he cannot refuse her request to help illegal immigrant Julia Rodriguez with her asylum request.  Julia fled El Salvador with her daughter, Beariz, to escape her abusive husband, Jorge. After her employer Duncan McBride gets his revenge by turning her into ICE, Julia is facing immediate deportation. Jack works as hard as he can to prevent this from occurring, but her case is looking grim. With Julia’s past about to catch up with her, will Jack and his trusted friend Theo Knight find a way to help her and Beatriz?

Jack is no expert in immigration law but he is a skilled attorney who works hard to find a legal way to keep Julia in the United States.  When he learns troubling details about Julia that affects her ability to be granted bond, Jack travels to El Salvador to uncover the truth.  He truly believes Julia’ life will be in jeopardy if she returns but will he find the information he needs to convince the judge?

Fourteen year old Beatriz is living with her aunt Cecelia after her mother is captured by ICE. At first optimistic they will soon be reunited, Beatriz soon gives up hope. Her health takes a perilous turn after she receives a threatening visit that terrifies her. Jack is hopeful he can sway the judge into granting Julia a compassionate bond but deportation attorney Simone Jerrell is determined to keep her in custody.

The case takes an ominous turn when someone associated with Julia is murdered. She is also shocked when someone she knew in El Salvador unexpectedly turns up in Miami. Even more frightening is the very real possibility that Jorge might also find her which puts not only life in jeopardy, but it also threatens her asylum. With her court date fast approaching, Jack is in a race against time to win her case.

The Girl in the Glass Box  is an engrossing mystery with a thought-provoking storyline. Julia and Beatriz are extremely sympathetic characters who have endured unimaginable horrors in their homeland. Jack is once again pulling out all the stops to help Julia remain in the US. Theo’s reaction to Julia is unexpected and incredibly sweet. With immigration issues dominating US headlines, James Grippando provides a heartrending glimpse the overwhelming fear undocumented immigrants experience as they fight for a safer, better life for themselves and their families.

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