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The Racketeer [Kindle Edition]

John Grisham
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (97 customer reviews)

Print List Price: CDN$ 11.99
Kindle Price: CDN$ 10.99 includes free international wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
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Sold by: Random House Canada, Incorp.
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Review

[T]his is not a story about a triumph or a miscarriage of courtroom justice. It's the more devious, surprising story of a smart man who gets even smarter once he spends five years honing his skills as a jailhouse lawyer -- and then expertly concocts an ingenious revenge scheme... Mr. Grisham writes with rekindled vigor here. New York Times Grisham introduces a small-town Virginia lawyer named Malcolm Bannister, who's dubiously convicted of money laundering for a drug-lord client, and maps out a revenge plot from his federal penitentiary cell that's twice as elaborate as the one Alexandre Dumas cooked up in The Count of Monte Cristo. Like many a Grisham hero, Mal is a legal insider who knows how to work the system to his advantage. He's also a peculiarly lone wolf, willing to shed all his family ties in pursuit of a very long and entertaining con. Entertainment Weekly 'Electrifying... carries the reader along one track (innocent man seeks exoneration) only to switch on to another (cat-and-mouse caper) halfway through with delicious, frictionless ease.' The Guardian

Product Description

The Racketeer is guilty of only one thing: keeping us engaged until the very last page.”—USA Today
 
#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
 
In the history of the United States, only four active federal judges have been murdered. Judge Raymond Fawcett has just become number five. His body is found in his remote lakeside cabin. There is no sign of forced entry or struggle. Just two dead bodies: Judge Fawcett and his young secretary. And one large, state-of-the-art, extremely secure safe, opened and emptied.
 
One man, a former attorney, knows who killed Judge Fawcett, and why. But that man, Malcolm Bannister, is currently residing in the Federal Prison Camp near Frostburg, Maryland. Though serving time, Malcolm has an ace up his sleeve. He has information the FBI would love to know. Malcolm would love to tell them. But everything has a price—and the man known as the Racketeer wasn’t born yesterday.
 
Praise for The Racketeer
 
“Exhilarating . . . surprising . . . ingenious.”—Janet Maslin, The New York Times
 
“A satisfying, deeply engrossing thriller in which different forms of justice are ultimately served.”—The Washington Post
 
“Fast-paced . . . with enough startling plot twists—and changes of scenery, from Miami to Montego Bay and beyond—to surprise even the most suspicious reader.”—The Wall Street Journal
 
“Tautly plotted.”—Entertainment Weekly

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Should Be Called "Money Grab" Nov. 24 2012
By Jeffrey Swystun TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
And I am not referring to the plot. Kudos to Mr. Grisham for creating a unique style within the mystery genre but this effort was on auto-pilot. One only has to read the author's note at the end which is an admission of sorts. The least enjoyable aspect was the main character. In his past novels the Grisham formula includes a main character that you empathize with and root for. In The Racketeer, I was actually hoping that the plot would see Malcolm Bannister get duped. I expect the author will return to form and may even innovate again.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Grisham At His Finest!!! Nov. 10 2012
Format:Hardcover
Have read all the Grisham's thus far, and absolutely loved this book. This book kept me guessing throughout and reminds me of the writing style of his earlier novels (ie: Time To Kill, Runaway Jury and The Chamber). Would definately recommend this to anyone who likes a good read that will keep you interested and guessing!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Shell Game From Inside Feb. 23 2013
By John M. Ford TOP 100 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover
John Grisham's latest legal thriller is fast-paced, engaging, and slaps the unwary reader with a few surprises. We've come to expect this. Among Grisham's other works, this story most resembles The Partner. That's at the general level of tone and feel. The plot twists of The Partner won't give anything away about this book. Don't bother checking.

Malcolm Bannister is an ex-attorney and a current involuntary resident of a minimum security prison camp just outside of Frostburg, Maryland. Halfway through a ten-year sentence, Malcolm has made his peace with his divorce and with the fact that his son's letters have stopped coming. He works in the prison library, gives legal advice to other inmates, and has stopped telling people that he was innocent of the money-laundering charges that put him inside. Malcolm is a model prisoner.

One day he makes an appointment with the warden and claims he can solve the brutal murder of a Federal judge. The warden, the FBI, and the Federal prosecutors are slow to believe yet another prisoner looking for a deal. But his information about the killer checks out. The murderer is identified, apprehended, and indicted. Malcolm is released, collects a substantial reward, and begins a new life in the Federal Witness Protection Program. Where it gradually becomes clear that Malcom--now Max--has his own agenda.

Grisham spins a good yarn, showing the same contempt for Federal agents and other attorneys that figures so prominently in The Firm. It isn't at all clear that the good guys will win or even who the good guys are. Or that there are any. But it is worth the time to watch the mysteries reveal themselves. This book is highly recommended for both Grisham fans and first-timers.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Twisted plot! Jan. 22 2013
Format:Hardcover
Having been disappointed with some of Grisham's recent novels, I approached this read with some trepidation. It seemed to start a bit slow with what appeared to me to be too much back story. However, as the plot developed my enjoyment of the story increased. In this tale, Grisham has woven an intricate tale full of twists and turns.

Basically, a black lawyer, Malcolm Bannister, is caught up unfairly in a large sweep of criminals and sent to a prison camp for ten years. While there his wife divorces him, his disappointed father visits monthly, and he uses his legal skills to help prisoners.

Then the judge who sentenced him is killed along with his secretary and his safe is emptied. What was in the safe? Who killed them? Malcolm seems to know and he uses this knowledge to come up with a scheme to get out of jail. His unbelievable scheme entertains us even as we cheer him for the way he cons the FBI. Or does he con them?

Like many of Grisham's books, this too is a terrible indictment on the American justice system, the prison system, the FBI, and corruption in general.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not his best, but entertaining Nov. 20 2012
By Luanne Ollivier #1 HALL OF FAME TOP 10 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover
John Grisham's last book - The Litigators - was one of my favourites by this award winning author. I was pretty excited to read his latest - The Racketeer.

Racketeer: "A person who commits crimes such as extortion, loansharking, bribery, and obstruction of justice in furtherance of illegal business activities."

Malcolm Bannister is a former attorney, currently serving time in the Frostburg, Maryland prison camp for money laundering. Trouble is, he swears he's innocent - he just picked the wrong client. License gone, wife gone, everything he had - gone. Five years into his sentence, he may have found a way out. He knows who killed Federal Judge Raymond Fawcett, found dead in his cabin retreat beside an empty safe. Can he bargain the killer's name for his freedom? And what about what was taken from the safe? There's a lot of people after that knowledge...

I love 'heist' and 'sting' type movies such as Ocean's Eleven. Grisham weaves his own take on the heist scenario with The Racketeer. And it's a great piece of storytelling. This is still a 'legal' thriller to a degree, but I think Grisham just had a lot of fun with this one. It's not a serious book, but an entertaining tale.

As he says in the author notes at the end: " The Racketeer is indeed a work of fiction. Accuracy was not deemed crucial. Long paragraphs of fiction were used to avoid looking up facts."

I chose to listen to this book. J.D. Jackson was the reader and his voice was perfectly suited to the main character. Macolm changes his speech patterns at one point and I did find the slower pace a bit annoying. I just wanted the story to move along.

The only reason I'm giving this a four instead of a five is that there was just something about Malcolm I didn't like.
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars John Grisham is always enjoyable to read. My type ...
John Grisham is always enjoyable to read.
My type of read aside from biography/history. Unfortunately I had it in French and did not realize it when I ordered it; the title... Read more
Published 2 days ago by Denyse Bertrand
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
I enjoyed the book but not one of his better books. However it is a good read.
Published 9 days ago by Gary Schrader
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
good story
Published 11 days ago by frank lenz
5.0 out of 5 stars 10 out of ten if not more.
As usual John Grisham ' s books are very well written and entraining. I could not put it down "The Racketeer". Hope to be able to read all his books.
Published 15 days ago by Rita daddario
5.0 out of 5 stars THANK GOODNESS FOR THE LITERARIES LIKE GRISHAM
ANOTHER GRISHAM ENGROSSING STORY. HE SURE IS A TALENTED WRITER AND THINKER.
Published 23 days ago by warmhearted
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Exactly as listed and fast delivery.
Published 26 days ago by Shams Tejani
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Predictable
Published 1 month ago by Corinne Hauer
5.0 out of 5 stars Love it.
I love John Grisham's book so this was really easy to love
Published 2 months ago by Ify
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Item received as described
Published 3 months ago by S. Russell Schumacher
4.0 out of 5 stars Good, But Not Grisham's Best
It's good to see Grisham sticking to the knitting. Books like Playing for Pizza and the Theodore Boone books are really not in the same league. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Brett H
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