|Image from jgrisham.com|
The Racketeer is about a lawyer (surprise!!!) who is in jail for something he didn't do. (Aren't they all? But this one seems legitimate. Because he wrote it that way.) I won't give any more details, because I'm terrible at providing a summary of a book without giving something crucial away. I sort of started figuring out the end of the book, but I had to read all the way to the end just to make sure it didn't have a sudden twist a la The Partner.
Grisham's writing has a sense of humor, a sarcastic one at times, which is probably why I like it so much. Grisham isn't afraid to poke fun at the legal profession (probably because he doesn't have to play that game anymore) or the "judicial" system at large.
I saw Grisham on Jon Stewart's show last week, and he was not only charming and funny, but he also held his own with Jon Stewart, and not many people do that. I see so many people on that show who think they are going to be taken seriously, and they find out pretty quickly that Jon isn't there to be serious. Grisham was delightful and entertaining.
The only negative thing I have to say about this book stems from my own shortcoming. The narrator of the book plainly states that he is a black man at the beginning of the book, but I still kept picturing him as white. I'm not racist by any means, and his color was significant at several points in the book. Not only did I picture him as white, I kept seeing John Grisham himself when I pictured the main character. It probably didn't help that I had just seen him on television.
I just thought of another negative. Grisham switched back and forth between present tense and past tense depending on whether he was speaking from the narrator's point of view (present tense) or filling in some blanks by narrating action going on elsewhere (past tense). I'm such a purist that I think writers should choose one or the other, but not switch back and forth between the two in the same story. But maybe I'm just being picky. Oh, and he split an infinitive or two. Yes, I realize that IS being picky. Purist=pickiness?
Negatives aside, this book was very entertaining. Occasionally I even stopped playing Hay Day long enough to read several pages. That's high praise.