RARELY does John Grisham revisit a set of characters, regardless of how successful that cast’s original exploits have been. In Camino Winds, Grisham makes an exception.
The fact readers are served up a second helping of Mercer Mann and Bruce Cable is a gift in itself; that their reinvigorated storyline takes an entirely new direction makes this sequel an intriguing contrast to the original novel, Camino Island, and at the same time a release that deserves to stand independently on merit.
In this instalment bookstore owner Cable is the key to the plot while Mann takes a sideways step into a peripheral role.
Hurricane Leo has just carved its way across Camino, twisting, churning and inflicting on the pretty seaside village of Santa Rosa catastrophic destruction and at least one death.
When Cable is called to the property of lawyer-turned-novelist Nelson Kerr to identify a battered body, it seems his friend has become an unwitting victim of the storm’s ferocity.
However, prompted by local author Bob Cobb and college student Nick Sutton, Cable soon starts to question whether the fatal injuries were indeed inflicted by flying debris. Could at least three separate blows to the head really have been caused by windborne branches? Surely the odds of this having happened must be extraordinarily low, so what – or who – actually did kill Kerr?
In the chaotic aftermath of Leo, Cable, Sutton and Cobb start to examine the circumstances surrounding his demise and workshop credible explanations.
Kerr – a former FBI whistleblower known for focusing on corporate wrongdoing – had just put the final touches to his next best-seller-in-waiting so could its imminent publication have spooked someone into wanting him silenced? In theory nobody has yet seen this freshly completed manuscript and so far the police have not considered it worth investigating. It could well be the motive they’ve been lacking, however.