Review: The Racketeer, John Grisham

Posted 27 October, 2012 by DLWhite in Reviews, Writers Read 0 Comments

The Racketeer Book Cover The Racketeer
John Grisham
Legal thriller
Doubleday
October 23rd 2012
paperback
340

Given the importance of what they do, and the controversies that often surround them, and the violent people they sometimes confront, it is remarkable that in the history of this country only four active federal judges have been murdered
Judge Raymond Fawcett has just become number five.
Who is the Racketeer? And what does he have to do with the judge’s untimely demise? His name, for the moment, is Malcolm Bannister. Job status? Former attorney. Current residence? The Federal Prison Camp near Frostburg, Maryland.
On paper, Malcolm’s situation isn’t looking too good these days, but he’s got an ace up his sleeve. He knows who killed Judge Fawcett, and he knows why. The judge’s body was found in his remote lakeside cabin. There was no forced entry, no struggle, just two dead bodies: Judge Fawcett and his young secretary. And one large, state-of-the-art, extremely secure safe, opened and emptied.
What was in the safe? The FBI would love to know. And Malcolm Bannister would love to tell them. But everything has a price—especially information as explosive as the sequence of events that led to Judge Fawcett’s death. And the Racketeer wasn’t born yesterday . .
Nothing is as it seems and everything’s fair game in this wickedly clever new novel from John Grisham, the undisputed master of the legal thriller. -from Goodreads.com

This book is why I love John Grisham. He makes a book hard to put down, with fast paced action peppered with high-level, believable detail. This book reminds me so much of the old Grisham. Make no mistake, I’m a diehard Grisham fan however he’s had a few shaky releases in the past few years (I know, I say that every time he releases a new book). I feel like this is a novel that I will read over and over, just like The Client, The Firm, The Associate, The Broker, etc. etc.

I like when I have a feeling about how the story will end and then I discover that I’m completely wrong. By the time I figure out what really happened, I’ve reached the end and I realize that the author has somehow managed to tell an entire story without being predictable and showing his hand too early. I’ve read far too many books in which the main conflict is solved too early and there are 100 pages of aimless blathering about nothing until the end of the book (i.e. The Girl with the Dragon tattoo). No such thing with The Racketeer.

Finally, I loved his Author’s note at the end of the story. He basically said he didn’t do any research, he made up a bunch of stuff and he wrote a great story. This is why I love Grisham.

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