The Racketeer Download eBook by John Grisham
Click Here to Download the Book 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.
Reviews For those of you who think he never left, let me refer you to "The Litigators," which I am sure was ghost written with or by someone else. But this "The Racketeer" is great. It's great within the genre. It is pure entertainment -- a page turner, the kind of plot you want to believe but almost cannot. By the midpoint, if you haven't figured out the keystone to the whole thing, it's okay, because the unfolding is great fun. Even if you did figure it out, it is fun watching the details fall into place. The pace of the revelations is careful and effective. If I have one criticism, it's Bannister's dealings with Nathan. There is something unnecessary there, and I find the disturbance-level to be a little bit outside the genre. There is an underlying beat of "revenge" in this story, but really there is no revenge and there is certainly no revenge to be had on Nathan by Bannister. The violence and the flip treatment of the guy is a tad overboard. I expected a justification for Bannister's treatment of him, but none was there. Except for those portions, the book is a romp -- a smug, high-stakes caper replete with shady characters and likable bad guys and a pinch of environmentalism added to its appeal. It sort of feels like a 1980s episode of Miami Vice. Cars, boats, and private planes. The narrator nailed the attitude of the main character/narrator. At first, I thought it was going too slow, as others have mentioned, but in time, I fell into the cadence of the reader and found his voice pleasant and
appropriate. He attempted no stupid female intonations, and that was a good thing. There are some odd things that don't quite line up for me in the plot. I found Bannister's meeting Vanessa in the prison visiting room a little unlikely. When they get together the first night, they act like long-time lovers. I also find the FBI's stupidity a little too clichĂŠ and convenient. The original deal struck between them and Bannister seemed too sweet, too quick and very unlikely, though I may be wrong and these things may really go that way. The ensemble of characters is interesting but very much kept in the background of Bannister. Of course the woman is gorgeous, but they and some other background people who help facilitate the ordeal are nearly nameless and very forgettable. I guess the takeaways here would be -- trust no one and Robin Hood was not a crook.
Well, this was another fun book I couldn't put down and my first E-read. AND a clever story line!!! Small-town lawyer, Malcolm Bannister, is half way thru a 10-year prison sentence for unknowingly becoming involved in money laundering (which is a RICO violation); and is, therefore, innocent. Then a federal judge, Raymond Fawcett, and his girlfriend are brutally murdered in an isolated cabin near an open safe. Bannister claims to know who the killer is and why the judge was killed which allows him to use Rule 35 to get out of prison. Rule 35 allows a prisoner an opportunity to obtain his release, be pardoned, or have his sentence reduced if said prisoner can lead authorities to someone who has committed a crime or can solve a crime. Malcolm can do both and enters witness protection with the reward money. The rest of the story is full of twists and turns explaining how things were dealt with after Bannister was released. I never quite knew what was going on, but everything came together with a surprise ending. This was not a fast paced plot, but it was a fast read and I was hooked from the first page. Beware - I have a tendency sometimes to sneak to the end of a book to find out who the murderer is or where the story is heading to better understand the plot and that is difficult with an E-reader - I was made to wait this time!
All I can say is this: Having been to federal prison twice, Grisham got this one right. Grisham weaved an excellent tail starring an attorney possibly jailed for a crime that he didn't commit. The grand conspiracy just had him caught up. But when the news broadcasts show a prominent federal judge found dead, the attorney takes action to solve the crime from behind the walls in exchange for his freedom. Oh, man I liked this one. The lawyer threw it all at the prison warden and FBI agents to do the ultimate... Read it and find out what. I had the luxury to listen to this over a few days in Audible, and it was excellent storytelling.
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