WRITING STYLE: 3.5/5
ENTERTAINMENT QUOTIENT: 4/5
Thrillers have always been a fan favourite among readers. A well-written thriller makes the author completely invested in the book, and the much clichéd page-turners are true in many cases. There is urgency in the plot and as a reader, you are desperate to know how things pan out. In the thriller section itself, there is another sub-genre that is even more popular as well. Of course, I am referring to legal thrillers. Whether it is Erle Stanley Gardner or John Grisham, there have been many popular authors who have thrilled readers with their excellent courtroom battle depictions.
Mark Gimenez falls into this category of successful authors that have been able to create excellent legal thriller plots. Con Law is his latest book and it is the start of a brand new series with the central character being John Bookman. Bookman is a law professor and more importantly, an expert in constitutional law. While he is certainly not your average conservative professor, he is more famous for taking up cases that are apparently lost causes and ends up winning them. One day, he receives a letter from an intern who had worked previously with him, about a possible fracking scam. With the locals fiercely defending what is their livelihood, this one has a lot of twists and turns throughout.
The central character is portrayed very well, with both expert knowledge in Con Law as well as the desire to make a difference. Readers will find backing the protagonist easy, especially as Bookman takes on cases that seem to have no chance of success. Also, the character is charismatic and easily loveable, considering that he does not have the conservative image that most professors do. Also, there is quite a good discourse on American Con Law, which was presented in a way that is easily understandable to readers who do not have a law background. Also, there is a good amount of humour interspersed in the book, which made it all the more enjoyable to read.
If there is any criticism, it has to be that the plot moves along slowly and that can be a bit of downer, considering that most thrillers are expected to go along faster. It is, of course, pertinent that the proper foundation is laid not only for the story but the series as well. But as a reader, you would feel that he could have done a bit better in terms of the pace of the story. Also, there are times when you would feel that enough information has been given about the history of the town and of the fracking industry, and the author should get on with the story.
On the whole, it looks like a series that will certainly be interesting and the book, in particular, was still fun to read; both informative and fun.