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Exotic refreshing cocktails next to book and straw hat by the pool on vacation._edited.jpg
  • Writer's pictureJudith D Collins

Camino Island

Camino Island by John Grisham

ISBN: 978-0385543026

Publisher: Doubleday

Publication Date: 6/6/2017 Format: Hardcover

My Rating: 4 Stars Bestselling author John Grisham stirs up trouble in paradise in his endlessly surprising new thriller. Priceless F. Scott Fitzgerald manuscripts stolen in a daring heist; a young woman recruited to recover them; a beach-resort bookseller who gets more than he bargained for—all in one long summer on Camino Island. CAMINO ISLAND, the 30th novel by bestselling author John Grisham, will be published by Doubleday on June 6, 2017, followed by his next legal thriller on October 24, 2017. Announced first printing for each title is 1.5 million copies. “We are thrilled to be publishing two books by John Grisham in 2017,” said Sonny Mehta, Chairman and Editor in Chief of Knopf. “The first, CAMINO ISLAND, is a caper of the highest form.

Whether writing about F. Scott Fitzgerald’s handwritten manuscripts, the worlds of bookselling and publishing, or the cat-and-mouse game between criminals and the Feds that chase them, John has outdone himself. The second novel, coming in October, is one of John’s classic, suspense-filled legal thrillers and we’ll have more to share soon.”

Read More Entertainment Weekly

My Review

John Grisham returns following The Whistler landing on my Top Books of 2016 to (my Sunshine state, Florida) a small island beach town. Steering away from his typical legal thrillers and courtroom scenes, with CAMINO ISLAND — thieves, priceless manuscripts, a heist, rare books, bookstores, and writers.

A little trouble in paradise. . .

A sophisticated gang of thieves pulls off a daring heist with a campus shooting that causes widespread panic. A secure vault deep below Princeton University’s Firestone Library containing. (F. Scott Fitzgerald’s manuscripts). Princeton has insured it for twenty-five million dollars.

As the FBI and a secret underground agency hunt them down, a young writer embarks on her own investigation into a prominent bookseller who is believed to have the precious documents.

Mercer Mann grew up spending summers on Florida’s Camino Island, where the mysterious insurance company representative, believes the stolen manuscripts are located.

Bruce has a popular and successful bookstore in the resort laid back town on Camino Island and deals in rare books. However, there is much more behind the storefront. He occasionally deals in the black market of stolen books and manuscripts.

Mercer Mann is a writer and in debt with plenty of student loans. She jumps at the chance when approached mysteriously about going undercover. She will be able to pay off her debt. She must learn secrets. Of course, she loves digging deep in the literary world, with a little sleuthing.

She is to get the goods on Bruce. Did Bruce who pulled off the literary crime of the century? Mann may not be the only one trying to get the goods. Will she take one for the team?

If you love “books about books”, rare bookshops, and enjoy revisiting the past with literary icons, like F. Scott Fitzgerald and Hemingway, mixed in with some booze (Key West style), a heist, and humor —this one is for you.

A multilayered game of cat-and-mouse with mystery, suspense, and ample entertainment.

I enjoy how Grisham is mixing things up a bit with his last few books. I listened to the audiobook and January LaVoy added the right spice with flair.

A huge Grisham fan — always a treat to read anything he pens. I read this book back in the summer; however, failed to post my review at that time.

Grisham conceived of the subject with his wife on a lengthy road trip to Florida when they discussed a work incorporating "stolen books, stolen manuscripts, bookstores, and booksellers.

No need to worry, legal thriller fans. (my favorite genre) . . . I just finished The Rooster Bar Grisham's 25th legal thriller, where he explores the world of for-profit law schools through a group of students who learn their school is owned by a shady hedge fund operator — inspired by a true story. These law students are also in deep debt, with no way out and no job opportunities — so they devise a scheme to "con a con."

Highly Recommend both books.

About the Author

Photo Credit: Photo credit Billy Hunt

Long before his name became synonymous with the modern legal thriller, he was working 60-70 hours a week at a small Southaven, Mississippi, law practice, squeezing in time before going to the office and during courtroom recesses to work on his hobby—writing his first novel.

Born on February 8, 1955 in Jonesboro, Arkansas, to a construction worker and a homemaker, John Grisham as a child dreamed of being a professional baseball player. Realizing he didn’t have the right stuff for a pro career, he shifted gears and majored in accounting at Mississippi State University. After graduating from law school at Ole Miss in 1981, he went on to practice law for nearly a decade in Southaven, specializing in criminal defense and personal injury litigation. In 1983, he was elected to the state House of Representatives and served until 1990.

One day at the DeSoto County courthouse, Grisham overheard the harrowing testimony of a twelve-year-old rape victim and was inspired to start a novel exploring what would have happened if the girl’s father had murdered her assailants. Getting up at 5 a.m. every day to get in several hours of writing time before heading off to work, Grisham spent three years on A Time to Kill and finished it in 1987. Initially rejected by many publishers, it was eventually bought by Wynwood Press, who gave it a modest 5,000 copy printing and published it in June 1988.

That might have put an end to Grisham’s hobby. However, he had already begun his next book, and it would quickly turn that hobby into a new full-time career—and spark one of publishing’s greatest success stories. The day after Grisham completed A Time to Kill, he began work on another novel, the story of a hotshot young attorney lured to an apparently perfect law firm that was not what it appeared. When he sold the film rights to The Firm to Paramount Pictures for $600,000, Grisham suddenly became a hot property among publishers, and book rights were bought by Doubleday. Spending 47 weeks on The New York Times bestseller list, The Firm became the bestselling novel of 1991.

The successes of The Pelican Brief, which hit number one on the New York Times bestseller list, and The Client, which debuted at number one, confirmed Grisham’s reputation as the master of the legal thriller. Grisham’s success even renewed interest in A Time to Kill, which was republished in hardcover by Doubleday and then in paperback by Dell. This time around, it was a bestseller.

Since first publishing A Time to Kill in 1988, Grisham has written one novel a year (his other books are The Firm, The Pelican Brief, The Client, The Chamber, The Rainmaker, The Runaway Jury, The Partner, The Street Lawyer, The Testament, The Brethren, A Painted House, Skipping Christmas, The Summons, The King of Torts, Bleachers, The Last Juror, The Broker, Playing for Pizza, The Appeal, The Associate, The Confession, The Litigators, Calico Joe, The Racketeer, Sycamore Row, and Gray Mountain) and all of them have become international bestsellers. There are currently over 300 million John Grisham books in print worldwide, which have been translated into 40 languages. Nine of his novels have been turned into films (The Firm, The Pelican Brief, The Client, A Time to Kill, The Rainmaker, The Chamber, A Painted House, The Runaway Jury, and Skipping Christmas), as was an original screenplay, The Gingerbread Man. The Innocent Man (October 2006) marked his first foray into non-fiction, and Ford County (November 2009) was his first short story collection.

Grisham took time off from writing for several months in 1996 to return, after a five-year hiatus, to the courtroom. He was honoring a commitment made before he had retired from the law to become a full-time writer: representing the family of a railroad brakeman killed when he was pinned between two cars. Preparing his case with the same passion and dedication as his books’ protagonists, Grisham successfully argued his clients’ case, earning them a jury award of $683,500—the biggest verdict of his career.

When he’s not writing, Grisham devotes time to charitable causes, including most recently his Rebuild The Coast Fund, which raised 8.8 million dollars for Gulf Coast relief in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. He also keeps up with his greatest passion: baseball. The man who dreamed of being a professional baseball player now serves as the local Little League commissioner. The six ballfields he built on his property have played host to over 350 kids on 26 Little League teams. Read More






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