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“Dubler’s telling of the trial is fast-paced and raw with emotion.” — Blue Ink Review

“Still, the highlight of the book is Dubler’s running comparison between his uneventful upbringing and the defendant’s traumatic one, and the ways in which both virtue and chance indelibly shape a life.” — Kirkus Reviews

A Dire Decision

When suburban dad Carl Dubler was selected for a jury, he should have found it easy to judge someone. A lifetime in the church gave him a clear sense of right and wrong, with little room for nuance. But this was for real. Permanent. The man before him was on trial for his life. Carl could choose mercy and offend those who clamored for justice. Or he could choose full justice—death—and offend those who said there had already been enough killing. Carl imagined God looking down at him with a wry smile and asking, “How do you like doing my job?”

Playing God in Chair Twelve: A Juror’s Faith-Changing Journey is the riveting true story of a notorious double-murder, a life-or-death judgment, and the faith journey that followed. Carl’s thought-provoking story reveals what happens when ordinary people must decide between justice and mercy, life and death.