First Sentence: I am a lawyer, and I am in prison.
The opening line not only captures our attention, but is a great hook. How could one not read one from there?
One of the things that makes reading Grisham so interesting is not only his obvious knowledge of the law, but inclusion of factual people, events and cases. However, Grisham can also infuriate one, not by his writing, but by the facts he includes—“An audit last year revealed that the Bureau of prisons had purchased, for “administrative use,” four thousands chairs at $800 per chair. The same manufacturer sold the same chair at wholesale for $79.”
Reading Grisham provides an eye-opening look at our “justice” system, and it’s not pretty. One quickly realizes that is no “justice” in our justice system.
Malcolm is such a well-constructed character. He is bright, clever, and takes the reader on a very twisty ride. What is especially interesting is that he’s really neither a good- or bad-guy, and neither are those chasing him. Malcolm is someone who knows how the system worked and played it like a Stradivarius. However, he’s not a character one particularly likes even though, in essence, he hasn’t done anything wrong.
“The Racketeer” is a very cleverly written puzzle. One must pay attention to the details, particularly toward the end. It may not be Grisham’s best book, but it is one that keeps you reading.
THE RACKETEER (Legal Thriller-Malcolm Bannister-Contemp) – Okay
Grisham, John – Standalone
Doubleday – Oct 2012