Hoffman, Jilliane 1967-
HOFFMAN, Jilliane 1967-
Born 1967; married; children: two. Education: St. John's University, B.A. (communications), J.D., 1992.
Attorney and author. Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office, Miami, FL, assistant state attorney, 1992-96; Florida Department of Law Enforcement, Miami, regional legal advisor, until 2001; previously worked for a civil law firm in New York, NY.
International Book of the Month designation, Bertelsmann DirectGroup, 2004, for Retribution.
Retribution (novel), G. P. Putnam's Sons (New York, NY), 2004.
Retribution was adapted for audio cassette and CD, read by Martha Plimpton, Putnam Berkley Audio, 2004. The film rights for Retribution were sold to Warner Bros.
WORK IN PROGRESS:
A sequel to Retribution, due for publication in 2005.
Jilliane Hoffman is a former Florida prosecutor and legal advisor who left her career in 2001 to pursue writing full time. Her first novel, Retribution, was published in 2004 and garnered much early praise. Library Journal reviewer Rebecca House Stankowski commented that "The realistic procedural details, tight prose, and sympathetic characters combine for an impressive debut."
Hoffman grew up on Long Island, New York, and attended St. John's University in Queens, obtaining an undergraduate degree in communications. After graduating from law school in 1992, Hoffman was hired as an assistant state attorney with the Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office in Florida. She later served as a regional legal advisor to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.
Hoffman drew heavily on her professional and personal experiences when writing Retribution. Hoffman and her protagonist, female Miami prosecutor C. J. Townsend, share career paths, family nicknames ("Beany"), and even prior apartments. C. J. is assigned the case of a serial killer, only to realize her quarry is the same man who brutally assaulted her when she was a law student. Bent on revenge, she conceals her past from her colleagues and vows to make her assailant pay. Hoffman said in an interview on the Penguin Group Web site that although the novel is not autobiographical from the standpoint that she was never raped, "as a woman, and as someone who has dealt with countless rape victims over the years, I have a clear sense of what rape might feel like, not just physically but also emotionally." Describing Retribution as a "legal, psychological suspense thriller," Hoffman says she was influenced by the writing styles of her favorite authors, including John Grisham, James Patterson, and Thomas Harris.
Some reviewers criticized the novel's surprise ending. For instance, Adam B. Vary of Entertainment Weekly remarked that the conclusion "reads like lukewarm Thomas Harris." However, Mary Frances Wilkens in Booklist called Retribution "a fine first novel, with twists and turns of the highest order and an ending that is downright breathtaking." A reviewer for Publishers Weekly concluded that Hoffman has joined the "list of high-powered legal ladies whose professional expertise serves as the basis for authentic, insider crime fiction."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Booklist, December 1, 2003, Mary Frances Wilkens, review of Retribution, p. 651.
Entertainment Weekly, January 16, 2004, Adam B. Vary, review of Retribution, p. 75.
Kirkus Reviews, October 15, 2003, review of Retribution, p. 1242.
Library Journal, October 1, 2003, Rebecca House Stankowski, review of Retribution, p. 122.
New York Times Book Review, January 11, 2004, Marilyn Stasio, review of Retribution, p. 19.
Publishers Weekly, November 10, 2003, review of Retribution, p. 40.
San Francisco Chronicle, January 4, 2004, David Lazarus, review of Retribution, p. M4.
Sarasota Herald Tribune, January 4, 2004, Susan L. Rife, "Fortune Smiles on First-Time Author Jilliane Hoffman," p. E5.
Penguin Group Web site,http://www.penguinputnam.com/ (August 31, 2004), interview with Hoffman.