Wonder If They Will Sell Any Copies

Take some words on a page. Add a dash of salt. Stir. Let sit 24 hours before serving.

duma.jpgIt’s not that easy for Stephen King and John Grisham to write national bestsellers — it only seems that way. I happened to hear on National Public Radio the other day that, coincidentally, both of these insta-hit writers have new books coming out at almost exactly the same time this week.

I haven’t read either book, but I thought I should scribble a few words anyway as their respective fans would likely want to know and where else are they going to receive notice? (Note: The following are summaries released by each book’s publisher. This does not constitute an official endorsement from this bookish bird.)

Duma Key by Stephen King

Edgar leaves Minnesota for a rented house on Duma Key, a stunningly beautiful, eerily undeveloped splinter of the Florida coast. The sun setting into the Gulf of Mexico and the tidal rattling of shells on the beach call out to him, and Edgar draws. A visit from Ilse, the daughter he dotes on, starts his movement out of solitude.

He meets a kindred spirit in Wireman, a man reluctant to reveal his own wounds, and then Elizabeth Eastlake, a sick old woman whose roots are tangled deep in Duma Key. Now Edgar paints, sometimes feverishly, his exploding talent both a wonder and a weapon. Many of his paintings have a power that cannot be controlled. When Elizabeth’s past unfolds and the ghosts of her childhood begin to appear, the damage of which they are capable is truly devastating. The tenacity of love, the perils of creativity, the mysteries of memory and the nature of the supernatural.

Stephen King gives us a novel as fascinating as it is gripping and terrifying.
The Appeal by John Grisham

appeal.jpgIn a crowded courtroom in Mississippi, a jury returns a shocking verdict against a chemical company accused of dumping toxic waste into a small town’s water supply, causing the worst “cancer cluster” in history. The company appeals to the Mississippi Supreme Court, whose nine justices will one day either approve the verdict or reverse it. 
Who are the nine? How will they vote? Can one be replaced before the case is ultimately decided?

The chemical company is owned by a Wall Street predator named Carl Trudeau, and Mr. Trudeau is convinced the Court is not friendly enough. With judicial elections looming, he decides to try to purchase himself a seat on the Court. The cost is a few million dollars, a drop in the bucket for a billionaire like Mr. Trudeau. Through an intricate web of conspiracy and deceit, his political operatives recruit a young, unsuspecting candidate. They finance him, manipulate him, market him, and mold him into a potential Supreme Court justice. “Their” Supreme Court justice.

“The Appeal” is a powerful, timely, and shocking story of political and legal intrigue, a story that will leave readers unable to think about our electoral process or judicial system in quite the same way ever again.

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