Camino Winds (Camino Island #2) by John Grisham

Book Description:

Published: April 28, 2020

Format: Hardback

Stars: 3

Welcome back to Camino Island, where anything can happen—even a murder in the midst of a hurricane, which might prove to be the perfect crime . . .

Just as Bruce Cable’s Bay Books is preparing for the return of bestselling author Mercer Mann, Hurricane Leo veers from its predicted course and heads straight for the island. Florida’s governor orders a mandatory evacuation, and most residents board up their houses and flee to the mainland, but Bruce decides to stay and ride out the storm.

The hurricane is devastating: homes and condos are leveled, hotels and storefronts ruined, streets flooded, and a dozen people lose their lives. One of the apparent victims is Nelson Kerr, a friend of Bruce’s and an author of thrillers. But the nature of Nelson’s injuries suggests that the storm wasn’t the cause of his death: He has suffered several suspicious blows to the head.

Who would want Nelson dead? The local police are overwhelmed in the aftermath of the storm and ill equipped to handle the case. Bruce begins to wonder if the shady characters in Nelson’s novels might be more real than fictional. And somewhere on Nelson’s computer is the manuscript of his new novel. Could the key to the case be right there—in black and white? As Bruce starts to investigate, what he discovers between the lines is more shocking than any of Nelson’s plot twists—and far more dangerous.

Review –

My husband read Camino Island, the first book in the Camino Island series and pre-ordered this one. When it arrived he was already reading something else so he said I could read it – so I did.

I had not read Camino Island but this book can serve as a stand-a-lone with no problem.  The first thing that bothered me was the speed at which the hurricane passed through in the first few pages. I think it at least deserved a chapter. Then upon discovering the body of Nelson Kerr, a fellow writer, they (a small group of hurrmian survivors) took it upon themselves to perform the job of police detectives – moving the body, searching for clues and finally taking all his perishable food (they later had a big cookout).

For me, the book went downhill from there. It was just okay and I told my husband I gave it three stars and that I wouldn’t be reading the first one or any more that may follow in this series.

I’m sorry Mr. Grisham, but it just wasn’t my cup  of tea.

 

Rogue Lawyer by John Grisham

Book Description:

Published: October 20, 2015

On the right side of the law. Sort of.

Sebastian Rudd is not your typical street lawyer. He works out of a customized bulletproof van, complete with Wi-Fi, a bar, a small fridge, fine leather chairs, a hidden gun compartment, and a heavily armed driver. He has no firm, no partners, no associates, and only one employee, his driver, who’s also his bodyguard, law clerk, confidant, and golf caddy. He lives alone in a small but extremely safe penthouse apartment, and his primary piece of furniture is a vintage pool table. He drinks small-batch bourbon and carries a gun.

Sebastian defends people other lawyers won’t go near: a drug-addled, tattooed kid rumored to be in a satanic cult, who is accused of molesting and murdering two little girls; a vicious crime lord on death row; a homeowner arrested for shooting at a SWAT team that mistakenly invaded his house.  Why these clients? Because he believes everyone is entitled to a fair trial, even if he, Sebastian, has to cheat to secure one. He hates injustice, doesn’t like insurance companies, banks, or big  corporations; he distrusts all levels of government and laughs at the justice system’s notions of ethical behavior.

 Sebastian Rudd is one of John Grisham’s most colorful, outrageous, and vividly drawn characters yet. Gritty, witty, and impossible to put down, Rogue Lawyer showcases the master of the legal thriller at his very best.
Review –
It looks like there might be a new lawyer in town. By that I mean that John Grisham may be starting a series of books starring a new lawyer protagonist, by the name of Sebatian Rudd, with Rogue Lawyer being the first installment.
Sebastian Rudd, a criminal defense attorney specializing in an extremely narrow area of the law: clients that are so unpopular that no other attorney will go near them. For example, as the book opens, Rudd is defending an antisocial, drug-addicted teenager accused of brutally murdering two small girls in a small town that has prejudged him as guilty. This does not deter Rudd, who does not care whether or not his client is innocent or guilty, only that he will be paid (or that he will get enough publicity to get hired again). Rudd constantly risks threats and attempts on his life to defend these unpopular clients. He has a bodyguard, always carries a handgun, and his “office” is a bulletproof van. (Reminds me of an upscaled version of the Lincoln Lawyer)
The book has numerous plots concerning guilty clients, except for one who was innocent and framed by the police. Mr. Grisham’s stance in this book is VERY anti-police, so much so, that at times it was just plain irritating.
Rudd, as most people call him has an ex-wife who left him for another woman, a son named Starcher (yup-the ex-wife named him) and no real friends. He enjoys cage fighting, drinking bourbon and playing golf alone and he sometimes wears disguises because disgruntled clients and policeman are always trying to kill him. He’s a sad soul, at least in my eyes.
The book was entertaining and since I had the audio version I finished it, but don’t know if I would have done so if it had been a hardback or e-book. If he follows up with another Sebastián Rudd book the blurb had better be really great or I probably will not read it.
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Skipping Christmas by John Grisham

Book Description:

Published: November 6, 2001

Imagine a year without Christmas. No crowded malls, no corny office parties, no fruitcakes, no unwanted presents. That’s just what Luther and Nora Krank have in mind when they decide that, just this once, they’ll skip the holiday altogether. Theirs will be the only house on Hemlock Street without a rooftop Frosty; they won’t be hosting their annual Christmas Eve bash; they aren’t even going to have a tree. They won’t need one, because come December 25 they’re setting sail on a Caribbean cruise. But, as this weary couple is about to discover, skipping Christmas brings enormous consequences–and isn’t half as easy as they’d imagined.

A classic tale for modern times, Skipping Christmas offers a hilarious look at the chaos and frenzy that have become part of our holiday tradition.

Review –

Five-star-feedback-on-oDesk

I  listen to this book every year and every year the idea of skipping Christmas sounds better and better.  I’m already to the point of not putting up the Christmas tree every year. It’s just me and my hubby, only one adult children and her husband,  no grand-children, so why go to the trouble, I ask you. Some years I HAVE to have it all, the tree, all the decorations, the music, the cards and of course the baking and other years I don’t care if I do any thing at all.

This year my tree was up before Thanksgiving, Christmas carols playing while I baked Christmas cookies etc.  At times I just sit in the living room and just stare at the tree, looking at all my old ornaments and remembering where they came from or who gave them to me. It’s wonderful and brings me peace.

Back to the book:

I’m sure many of you have seen the movie that is made based on the book, Christmas With The Kranks,but I just saw it for the first time night before last. It was okay, but the book is so much better. Parts of the movie look like slap-stick and other parts are just plain stupid. The book is humorous and the narration is perfect. I love it and that’s why I listen to it every year.

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Skipping Christmas by John Grisham

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Book Description:

 

Published: 2001

Imagine a year without Christmas. No crowded malls, no corny office parties, no fruitcakes, no unwanted presents. That’s just what Luther and Nora Krank have in mind when they decide that, just this once, they’ll skip the holiday altogether. Theirs will be the only house on Hemlock Street without a rooftop Frosty; they won’t be hosting their annual Christmas Eve bash; they aren’t even going to have a tree. They won’t need one, because come December 25 they’re setting sail on a Caribbean cruise. But, as this weary couple is about to discover, skipping Christmas brings enormous consequences-and isn’t half as easy as they’d imagined. A classic tale for modern times, Skipping Christmas offers a hilarious look at the chaos and frenzy that have become part of our holiday tradition.

 

Review –

I make it a practice to listen to this audiobook at least once during the Christmas season.   I love it.  I think we have all felt like doing what Luther Krank attempted to do but we never do.  Cheers to John Grisham on a fantastic holiday charmer.

 

Playing for Pizza by John Grisham

Book Description

Publication Date:  September 2007
Rick Dockery was the third-string quarterback for the Cleveland Browns. In the deciding game at the climax of the season, to the surprise and dismay of virtually everyone, Rick actually got into the game. With a 17-point lead and just minutes to go, Rick provided what was arguably the worst single performance in the history of the NFL. Overnight, he became a national laughing stock and, of course, was immediately dropped by the Browns and shunned by all other teams. But all Rick knows is football, and he insists that his agent, Arnie, finds a team that needs him. Against enormous odds, Arnie finally locates just such a team and informs Rick that, miraculously, he can in fact now be a starting quarterback. Great says Rick – for which team? The mighty Panthers of Parma, Italy. Yes, Italians do play American football, to one degree or another, and the Parma Panthers desperately want a player from the home of American footballat their helm. So Rick reluctantly agrees to play for the Panthers – at least until a better offer comes along – and heads off to Italy. He knows nothing about Parma (not even where it is), has never been to Europe, and doesn’t speak or understand a word of Italian. To say that Italy – the land of opera, fine wines, extremely small cars, romance and football americano – holds a few surprises for Rick Dockery would be something of an understatement.
 Review –
An easy read for summer time pleasure. The plot is light, the characters likeable and quirky and the description of the Italian countryside is breathtaking.   Read this for pure fun.

The Confession by John Grisham

An innocent man is about to be executed.

Only a guilty man can save him.

For every innocent man sent to prison, there is a guilty one left on the outside. He doesn’t understand how the police and prosecutors got the wrong man, and he certainly doesn’t care. He just can’t believe his good luck. Time passes and he realizes that the mistake will not be corrected: the authorities believe in their case and are determined to get a conviction. He may even watch the trial of the person wrongly accused of his crime. He is relieved when the verdict is guilty. He laughs when the police and prosecutors congratulate themselves. He is content to allow an innocent person to go to prison, to serve hard time, even to be executed.

Travis Boyette is such a man. In 1998, in the small East Texas city of Sloan, he abducted, raped, and strangled a popular high school cheerleader. He buried her body so that it would never be found, then watched in amazement as police and prosecutors arrested and convicted Donté Drumm, a local football star, and marched him off to death row.

Now nine years have passed. Travis has just been paroled in Kansas for a different crime; Donté is four days away from his execution. Travis suffers from an inoperable brain tumor. For the first time in his miserable life, he decides to do what’s right and confess.

But how can a guilty man convince lawyers, judges, and politicians that they’re about to execute an innocent man?

  
Review – I listened to this as an audiobook and it was long, 12 discs long,  I found the first half to be somewhat repetitive and it began to get on my nerves.  One can take legal jargon and processes so long before it becomes boring.  The second half of the book made up for any short comings the first half had and it went full speed ahead.
 This was a very good story but sad.  I could see what was going to happen and I just wanted to say “No, No, No.”, but without the sadness the story would only be half told.
  
I thoroughly enjoyed this book and if you’re a John Grisham fan give it a try.
 
 

 

The Broker by John Grisham

Synopsis

In his final hours in the Oval Office, the outgoing President grants a controversial last-minute pardon to Joel Backman, a notorious Washington power broker who has spent the last six years hidden away in a federal prison. What no one knows is that the President issues the pardon only after receiving enormous pressure from the CIA. It seems Backman, in his power broker heyday, may have obtained secrets that compromise the world’s most sophisticated satellite surveillance system.
Backman is quietly smuggled out of the country in a military cargo plane, given a new name, a new identity, and a new home in Italy. Eventually, after he has settled into his new life, the CIA will leak his whereabouts to the Israelis, the Russians, the Chinese, and the Saudis. Then the CIA will do what it does best: sit back and watch. The question is not whether Backman will survive—there is no chance of that. The question the CIA needs answered is, who will kill him

Review-

I can’t believe that I hadn’t read (or listened to in this case) this book sooner.  The story pulled me in immediately and I found  myself rooting for the”bad guy” and in the end ( I bet you thought I was going to tell you what happens) something happens that made my day.  I think it would make a great TV movie but until then be sure and check it out in paper format or audio.  You won’t be sorry.