Kerrie at Mysteries in Paradise is running a weekly meme: The Alphabet in Crime Fiction. Each week you have to write a blog post about crime fiction related to the letter of the week.
Kerrie explains that your post MUST be related to either the first letter of a book’s title, the first letter of an author’s first name, or the first letter of the author’s surname.
So you see you have lots of choice. You could write a review, or a bio of an author, so long as it fits the rules somehow.
This week’s letter is B and the book I’ve chosen to write about is The Brethren by John Grisham. I first read this several years ago when I was having a Grisham binge, reading every book by him that I could find. I read them so quickly and then promptly forgot about them.
This one sticks in my mind a bit more than some of the others, mainly because of its title. There are two strands to the story. The first concerns the Brethren – three judges imprisoned in Trumble a minimum security federal prison. They meet every week in the law library with the prison’s approval to hear cases and settle disputes between the other prisoners, and also, but not with approval, they’re running a gay-extortion scheme raking in hundreds of thousands of dollars. The money is then smuggled out to their attorney and deposited in their secret offshore bank account.
Then there is Aaron Lake, a congressman talked into running for President by Teddy Maynard of the CIA. Lake is handsome, articulate and smart, with no bad habits, clean as a whistle with a pretty dull private life since he’d become a widower: a solid candidate, very electable. But then, of course the two plots link up.
I haven’t re-read the book, but my memory of it is, like all the other Grisham books that I’ve read, that it is fast-paced, packed with legal detail, complicated and for me at least totally absorbing. I may even read it again.