Cover Image: The Unveiling

The Unveiling

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Member Reviews

This was a heartbreaking memoir, but an important one. Ruth offers such a multifaceted perspective to the tragedy and hardship she has experienced, not only with the murder of her son, but with the never ending aftermath. I especially appreciated her familial religious/spiritual practices and beliefs that she included, in grief and otherwise. Her tremendous sense of loss was palpable and I thought about her and her son’s story long after I finished the book. Thank you for the ARC and my thoughts go out to you, Ruth, as you continue to navigate all the destruction this death by murder has caused.
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This book is a challenging read. It's a hard read, not because it's poorly written. It's challenging because it's hard to read through the author's emotions and not want to cry. This book is well-written, and it pulls on your heartstrings. 
Ruth's son was murdered, and if that is not enough, her grandsons were also ripped from her life by one of the people probably involved in her son's untimely death. The author writes about her son and his life, his accomplishments, and then his murder. Not only his murder but how his murder affected her and her struggle. Ruth is a powerful woman, and she still charges forward, trying to get answers to get justice for her son.  Ruth gives hope and advice to anyone who has or is going through the kind of loss she has with her son. She is fearless. This is an excellent story for anyone who enjoys true crime or biographies. I enjoyed her story, and her bravery and courage to write this story are extraordinary! I would like to extend my gratitude to Netgalley as well as Post Hill Press for the unimaginable but strong story I was able to read and review.
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I am aware of the Dan Markel murder story courtesy ABC's 20/20 and have followed the ups and downs of various arrests and trials over the years. It's all so vicious and incendiary.  

'The Unveiling' is an exhaustive step-by-step account by Dan Markel's mother Ms. Ruth Markel, about all the familial and legal pandora box that opened right after the murder. Serving almost as a guidebook for all parents who face such a situation as murder of a child, it is also an archive for the grandchildren Benjamin and Lincoln, if they ever get to see / read it, on what their father was and what their paternal grandparents went through to make sure the children don't forget him.  

The most chilling thing that is left curiously unexplained by an otherwise verbose Ms. Markel is the security measures she and Phil Markel have taken against possible / probable attack on their life by the Adelson family. When Ms. Markel writes that she and her ex-husband met the grandkids in May 2022 at Wendi Adelson's place (around the time she was testifying in court), it sent chills down my spine. Because frankly, the only thing one can expect from the Adelsons is murder to make sure kids never go to nor have any bonded relationship with the paternal grandparents. Their past conduct is testament to their hatred for Dan Markel and his values and religious beliefs. I doubt they'll let anyone 'win' against them. 

Markel Act is a good effort. 

All the best to the Markels in an incredibly difficult situation. 

Thanks to the publisher for the ARC.
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In this book, Ruth Markel shares about her life before and after her son’s murder. We often hear about the police investigation and the suspected or convicted criminals in true crime stories. That’s been the case with most of the coverage of Dan Markel’s murder in Tallahassee, Florida, up to this point. It was poignant to hear instead from a victim’s close family member directly. 

I remember coming across the podcast “Over My Dead Body” by Wondery sometime after it started releasing back in 2019 and I was hooked. It told the story of Dan Markel’s murder and the investigation up to that point. I always wanted to know more about Dan’s family since they were relatively quiet in the media at the time of the podcast. I knew I had to read this book once I saw it was being published and especially because it was written by Ruth Markel.  

Ruth begins by describing the day of the murder and the events following when she and her family were still coming to understand what transpired. She paints a picture of how they knew very little at first and gradually learned more from the police while also dealing with their grief, spending time mourning, figuring out Dan’s estate, and trying to support Dan’s children. She also takes the reader through their life as victim’s dealing with police, investigators, attorneys, victim advocates and others. The complexity is overwhelming and not often discussed in our culture. There have been several trials for those involved in Dan’s murder, so Ruth describes how their family experienced the many setbacks and delays common in the court system along with the trauma of hearing testimony of the crime during what she calls the “trial life.” She explains how her family, friends and legal counsel have helped her and her family navigate these many difficult years. The family's Jewish faith is weaved throughout the book which I felt added an interesting and personal element.

What I found most interesting is the point of view of Dan’s mother and family in this case of a murder for hire plot. Ruth described how their family was pushed away by Dan’s ex-wife and the many strange occurrences that didn’t make sense in the time immediately after Dan’s murder. I heard and read about much of this in the podcast and online news media, but it was all one-sided. I had lots of questions in my mind about how Dan’s family handled all of this, so it was very interesting to read Ruth’s description of events. She not only describes what occurs, but also the emotions and feelings she experienced, and how she took action to hopefully prevent others from dealing with the same things.

Dan had two young sons at the time of his murder and his ex-wife has retained custody of them despite her family being implicated in Dan’s murder. Ruth describes her fight to see her grandchildren and remain a presence in their life after they were told they would no longer have contact with them by Dan’s ex-wife. She specifically describes her work in the legislature along with many of Dan’s friends to secure better grandparent rights in Florida which was inspiring. 

This book is a window into what Ruth Markel and her family suffered and continue to deal with in the aftermath of Dan Markel’s murder. The grief is raw and personal. Ruth doesn’t seem to hold much back. I appreciate her for sharing her story and being vulnerable. After everything she has been through, it must have taken a lot of courage to write this book and put it into the world. It also honors the life Dan Markel led which was tragically cut short. This is a compelling and worthwhile book which I hope many people will read. 

Thank you NetGalley and Post Hill Press for providing this book for review consideration. All opinions are my own.
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Ruth Markel is the mother of the late Dan Markel, a noted law professor who was murdered in Tallahassee, Florida in 2014.

In The Unveiling, she describes her experiences since the day of Dan’s death from several distinct perspectives:
As a devastated mother with the unique human perspective of becoming a homicide survivor and victim.
As a woman whose attempts to achieve normalcy and live a healthy life are continually interrupted by painful reminders, a rollercoaster of hearings, frequently changing trial dates, verdicts, and appeals.
As an engaged citizen using what she has learned to help other victims of homicide and violent crimes recover from trauma and begin an optimistic outlook on life.
As an insider who shows how our collective network of family, friends, and experts—including a murder coach—have helped her family remain involved, motivated, and hopeful.
As a grandmother who had not been allowed to see her grandchildren in many years, she used advocacy to inspire the Florida State Legislature to pass a grandparent visitation bill.
And as an experienced author of nine books using the written word to effectively address the shift from grief to promise.
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This ARC was provided to me via Kindle, from Post Hill Press and #NetGalley. Thank you for the opportunity to preview and review. Opinions expressed are completely my own. 

I’ve listened to several podcasts on this particular topic. The pain a mother faces in time of this tragedy is so profound. This heinous crime produced a powerful memoir.
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While the memoir is a  heartfelt cry for the loss of a beloved child to murder, the focus of this story is how the murder affected   extended family dynamics in a highly negative way. The author grieves loss of time with grandchildren, and after repeated snubs, loses faith in her son's wife and in-laws'  good intentions. The gradual realization of the guilt of those people who murdered her son seems to be  as painful as the murder itself. 
The reader will empathize with the author of this gripping narrative.
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What a powerful and reflective book. This could of easily become a book full of hate and vitriol, IT IS THE EXACT OPPOSITE.
It is a heartbreaking and dignified account of an horrific time. Not just the immediate aftermath of Dan's murder but the on going legal procedures and processes 7years later. 
The additional estrangement from two adored grandsons and the fight to change access rights for grandparents. Runs alongside the criminal and court processes. 
I admire the writing styles and dignity displayed by the author. 
An important book.
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3.5 stars. I think this needs some real editing and to be streamlined so that it reads more as a coherent timeline of events. I was often gripped especially with details of the divorce and that aspect of things and how it began to unfold in this young man’s life. But then there would be a long hiatus and that thread was lost and I began to skim to try and get back to it. Other times there was some jumping back and forth. It’s such a shocking story with murky characters and such a shame that he was in the position he was, in and amongst them. 

I was genuinely interested to hear the authors story and her journey through this desperately sad situation. Thanks to Netgalley for the arc.
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A tragic story with a determined mother who shares every intimacy of what she and her family has endured. You cannot help but admire and be inspired by her. This is a book not to be missed. Thanks to Netgalley, the author and publishers for an e-arc in exchange for my honest opinion.
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What a story. I'd seen it in the news but hearing author tell about her son was even more heartbreaking. 

Thanks to author, publisher and Netgalley for the chance to read this book. While I got the book for free, it had no bearing on the rating I gave it.
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I read this book with a tissue beside me. Thanks to NetGalley, I received an advance copy. I saw this story a few years ago, and it broke my heart. Dan was a father and son and meant the world to his relatives. This book offers the entire story and how Ruth Markel fought for justice. Great book and a must-read!
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I’m sure many people recall when this tragic crime took place in Tallahassee, FL in 2014. The daytime murder of the much – loved and respected law professor Dan Markel lingered in my mind, making me want to learn more about the case. When I figured out that this book was the answer to my curiosity, I was torn. It’s well written and kept me zeroed in on it all the way through. But it was also triggering for me, as I lost my son, my only child last October, and he was murdered as well. But I feel that this book is important enough that I pushed through and read it, mostly through tears. I don’t think I’ve ever related so much to a book in its descriptions and explanations of profound or complicated grief. While it’s not an easy, emotionless read, I found it very worthwhile. My heart goes out to the author and her family.
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I had recently heard of the Dan Markel case because of the podcast Court Junkie and when I saw that Ruth was writing a book, I knew I had to read it. The book was very much the writing of a grieving mother who just wants answers as to what happened to her son and more importantly why. We understand the who but we really don't know the why. I also hate that her connection to her grandchildren is severed as well as her former daughter in law not facing any prosecution when most of us can deduce that clearly Wendi had something to do with it.
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