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Summary

All trails became dead ends. Tips that had at first seemed urgent now faded away. The waiting game began. Whoever had the manuscripts would want money, and a lot of it. They would surface eventually, but where and when, and how much would they want?

The most daring and devastating heist in literary history targets a high security vault located deep beneath Princeton University. Valued at $25 million (though some would say priceless), the five manuscripts of F. Scott Fitzgerald's only novels are amongst the most valuable in the world. After an initial flurry of arrests, both they and the ruthless gang of thieves who took them have vanished without trace. Dealing in stolen books is a dark business, and few are initiated to its arts - which puts Bruce Kable right on the FBI's Rare Asset Recovery Unit's watch list.

A struggling writer burdened by debts, Mercer Mann spent summers on Florida's idyllic Camino Island as a kid, in her grandmother's beach cottage. Now she is being made an offer she can't refuse: to return to the peace of the island, to write her novel - and get close to a certain infamous bookseller, and his interesting collection of manuscripts....

©2017 Belfry Holdings, Inc (P)2017 Random House Audio

What members say

Average customer ratings

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  • 4 out of 5 stars
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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

An Island Story Adrift From its Plot

I've always liked a good John Grisham; when he's on form with his legal thrillers he's the master of his domain. My impression is that when he strays off his home turf and tries to play away the results are a little more mixed. Camino Island has done nothing to change my mind.

There's the positive in that I found the characters engaging with the decadent literary clique he creates on the island genuinely enjoyable. The story is interesting and the idea is good but the whole thing never took off for me or got the pulse racing. The heist is by modern thrillers fairly standard Ocean's Eleven fayre without the killer cleverness. The plotting isn't of the highest standard. For example one of the highly professional and experienced thieves who had a criminal record chooses to ignore something he really would have known meant serious trouble.

The narration by January Lavoy is of her normal high standard. She reads very clearly and at a brisk pace while managing a wide range of character voices. There is one female character on the island that is written as a soft touch to be fair but who ends up coming out as a wet enough blanket to dowse any small house fire!

Throughout though there was no great feeling of ongoing jeopardy and the main subject seemed often distant or in the background. This meant that while this is fairly enjoyable reading it never builds up any great head of steam or excitement. In all a pleasant rather than exciting or spectacular read that won't stay long in the mind or make it into most people's Grisham top ten list.

21 of 26 people found this review helpful

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Boring book badly narrated

The subject matter of this book is badly chosen and the writing is poor, which is disappointing from a veteran writer such as Grisham. Long conversations between characters that go nowhere and add nothing to the plot, and no sense of tension. The narrator is awful, very hard to listen to and resorts to "comedy" accents. Avoid.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Boring!

A really slow story,with uninspiring and unattractive characters. We gave up after several hours listening, since nothing of any interest ever seems to happen!
Try one of his other books...

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Flat ending

Well it started well, promising I thought, but slumped. Then it picked up again, again it disappointed at the end.
I thought so much more would happen with such a good story line, I almost want to rewrite the book myself.
I've enjoyed the previous books by this author and I have another one I've purchased on Audible. I hope it's better than this one. Watch this space. Jess In Wiltshire

5 of 7 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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"Excellent beginning deplorable ending. "


A great start that basically goes nowhere, very frustrating it had a plot that was full of possibility characters that had a great beginning and all just went flat and pointless.

Not worth the money or the time for a proper review

11 of 16 people found this review helpful

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Disappointing

Any additional comments?

I have 26 Grisham books in my audible library - I thoroughly enjoyed 25 of them but this was a major letdown for me and far below his norm. The story dragged on and the performance was average at best - suffice to say if this was the first of his books I listened to it would have also been the last.

4 of 6 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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narrator spoils this book. do not buy... Hard to<br />g

hard to get into. her voice spoils it as she doesn't pull you into the plot, charectors from the outset. do not buy this book...


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    2 out of 5 stars
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Boring

This book was boring but I slogged through to the end. Camino island sounds an exciting glamorous place but believe me the author manages to make it a very dull place. his lengthy descriptions of the size of the rooms and the shelves in the local bookshop
Almost made me put the book down. Terribly disappointing. Grisham should stick to his usual format. This did not work

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars

Dull!

The sample chapter was enticing setting up the intriguing plot and leaving me wanting more. Sadly however the book was just dull. It was really hard to follow the plot as the book seemed to jump an awful lot leaving you puzzled. The ending was naff and left me even more puzzled and perplexed.

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Great Gatsby and more

Totally enjoyable. A good listen with a twist in the tail. Recommended for any Grisham fan.

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  • Nicholas Kirriwom
  • 04-05-18

Enjoyed The Story

Loved reading. Full of suspense from the beginning. A bit different from other books written by J Grisham.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 29-08-17

Good holiday read

A good narrator, clever plot and an interesting end to the story! A holiday read.