Friday, 22 February 2013

The Racketeer by John Grisham

Malcolm Bannister is a prisoner undergoing a ten year sentence in a low risk federal camp. He is wrongly convicted of being involved in a racketing scam. Malcolm is a lawyer, who had now spent five years of his imprisonment hoping for something to happen. Something does happen. Judge Fawcett is found murdered in his secluded lakeside cabin and Malcolm knows who murdered him and why? Malcolm uses Rule 35 to cut a deal with the FBI and leave the Prison with his sentence commuted. But now he has to keep watching all the time.

The story progresses very slowly and where it is going I couldn't guess. Initially I thought it would be about Malcolm on the run, how the witness protection programme works or don't. So if it is, why is the book called the Racketeer? So when is the racketing stuff going to surface. There is a talk about payback, revenge. I couldn't help wondering revenge on whom, the FBI, the Judge, the guy who got him involved in racketing or somebody else? It slowly unravels and there isn't much to guess because the narrator does not reveal more than his immediate actions. Did I see it coming? No! It's all a surprise to me. There were little hints that add up in the end. I wish there was more tension, suspense or anticipation about things to happen that hooked me to the book than just a little interest to know what Malcolm is doing.

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