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Archive for December, 2016

The Whistler by John Grisham

Reviewed by Allen Hott

The WhistlerI would say this is Grisham’s best but I believe I say that after each of his books that I read. But truthfully this is a tremendous read. He always does a great job writing about the courts and trials but this one like some others goes into a lot of detail about the happenings outside the courthouse.

Lacy Stoltz, a lawyer working as an investigator for the Florida Board on Judicial Conduct, is sent on a possible case by her boss. She and Hugo, her partner, meet up with a guy who is definitely hiding as he uses aliases and lives on a boat. Greg Myers, the man they meet, is asking them to file a claim under the Florida Whistleblower Statue for a client of his. Myers is very close mouthed and doesn’t give up the names of his client or his client’s “mole”. However he truly believes that there is a mob known as the Catfish Mafia that is committing crimes across a huge part of the Gulf coastal area and that they also control a female judge of high ranking in the area.

They report back to their boss with the information and he tells them as long as Myers signs a valid complaint they will take on the case. They both feel that the FBI or someone should be involved since it appears the entire situation includes a casino on Indian tribal property which is basically “hands-off” from local police enforcement.

Myers does sign the complaint and gives them more interesting information which gets them going rather quickly into checking out some of the claims that he has made. They quickly find a lot of evidence that this judge, Claudia McDover, has been involved in many, many cases for the Tappacola Reservation and the new casino. Much legal work had to be done, some somewhat sketchy and questionable, to get land rights waived and road construction performed whether or not it was really necessary for the entire area. And McDover seemed to steam roll the proceedings along in favor of the Indians. Both investigators still want Myers or their boss to agree to calling in the FBI because of the depth of the charges but until they get more evidence their boss says no. And Myers has staunchly said no all along until they get more deeply involved

That happens especially after they meet with one of the Tappacola tribe whose brother is in prison for a murder which appears to have been committed by someone else!

It isn’t too long after that a horrible “accident” occurs when Lacy and Hugo are on their way to meet what they believe to be another mole connected to the case based on the phone call they receive.

As usual with Grisham however he plays down the romantic side of any of his stories and goes for the guts which always are how the law works and also how the criminal side of the particular story also works.

The Whistler really does go into depth into both of these sides as the story moves along. The reader gets a good view of what these criminal minds know and how they work when confronted with law enforcement.

And on the other side Grisham shows all the many tools that the FBI use to pull together evidence and expand upon it to really nail their target.

This is a terrific read and one that the reader has an extremely hard time laying aside to do anything else. It holds your interest and has you racing along to see what all will end up happening. Almost like gambling at a casino!!!

Grisham at his best! Thank you once more, Mr. Grisham!

Exiles: A Mystery in Paris (The Daniel Levin Mysteries Book 1) by Lawrence J. Epstein

Reviewed by Timea Barabas

Exiles:  A Mystery in ParisAlthough the title of the novel by Lawrence J. Epstein reads Exiles: A Mystery in Paris, in fact there are several types of mysteries tackled on various levels. The readers are invited to explore these and see beyond the shadow of the murder case which reigns over the plot.

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It all unravels in Paris, 1925 – a period marked by recovery, vitality and hope. It is the hope of a fresh start that pushes Daniel Levin to leave his home and venture into a foreign land to try and accomplish his dream of becoming a writer. While he quickly befriends the right people and receives a lot of help from them, he still has to face a lot of obstacles alone. Some of these are regarding his literary carrier, some even threaten his life.
Soon after his arrival, a murder takes place in his vicinity. The audacity of the crime and the fame of the victim guarantee the headlines. While he begins as merely a keen observer, his status will shift as he will find himself ever more involved in the case. Meanwhile, he is also faced with the mystery of love and its many masks. Levin thus has the opportunity to discover a city like Paris through a woman. As a bonus, the pages of the book are spiced with the appearances of famous characters of the likes of Sylvia Beach, Ernest Hemingway, Scott Fitzgerald and Gertrude Stein, all of who are strongly portrayed and bring an extra layer of complexity to the novel. Read the rest of this entry »

Chaos: A Scarpetta Novel by Patricia Cornwell

Reviewed by Suzanne Odom

ChaosBestselling author Patricia Cornwell’s beloved medical examiner Kay Scarpetta is faced with one of her most bizarre cases yet. She and her investigative partner, Pete Marino must solve the mystery.

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On an unusually hot autumn night in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Kay and Pete are called to the scene of a dead bicyclist. The young woman appears to have been struck by lightning, but the strange thing is that there were no storms that night or lightning strikes at the time of her death. She seems to have been attacked mysteriously with super human force. Read the rest of this entry »

A Glitch in the System by Adam Aust

Reviewed by Lisa Brown-Gilbert

A Glitch in the SystemDebuting as a compelling and uncompromisingly good read, Adam Aust’s A Glitch in the System brings readers the forefront of the thriller genre with its riveting merging of sex, mystery and legal intrigue that has a dominatrix racing against time and the odds to solve an engulfing mystery that is completely destroying her life.

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In a particularly fascinating and intriguingly creative narrative, author Aust treats his readers to a gripper of a story that successfully flows with the spine tingling continuity similar to other well-known thriller writers like John Grisham. The story is steeped in a plot infused with cleverly planned and flowing twists that lend to this being an adventurously scintillating read that you want to finish in one sitting. Read the rest of this entry »