Pubblicato in Italia con il titolo Il Caso Fitzgerald. Dopo che i manoscritti dei romanzi di Francis Scott Fitzgerald sono stati rubati, la scrittrice Mercer Mann viene mandata sotto copertura in Camino Island per scoprire se l’affascinante proprietario della libreria sia in possesso dei manoscritti.
The manuscripts of the five novels published by F. Scott Fitzgerald are stored in a vault at Princeton University and they are worth millions. When they are stolen in the middle of the night, the FBI works hard to find them but after months of investigation they are nowhere near in finding the valued manuscripts. Struggling and out-of-job author Mercer Mass turns into a spy when she is asked to help recuperate the stolen manuscripts. She is asked to go back to Camino Island where she spent many summers with her late grandmother Tess and befriend the owner of the local and very successful bookstore, Bruce Cable, who is suspected to be hiding the manuscripts in the basement of his bookstore.
Bruce is very charming and is surrounded by fascinating writers and his partner (and maybe wife) Noelle. Mercer successfully gets into his circle of writers and starts to investigate, sometimes having to cross lines to get to the manuscripts.
This is the first novel by John Grisham I read and what attracted me most to it is that it featured one of my favorite authors, F. Scott Fitzgerald and that it is set in the world of publishing. I quite enjoyed it: the plot is well-crafted and intriguing (although there are a few of unrealistic moments) and the characters are engaging, likable, and colorful. The characters are so well-developed that you can’t help liking even some of the bad guys.
I liked how the author is very much present in the narration with his comments, his encouragement, and his predictions.
There is some romance and there is some suspense, especially as we get closer to the ending and the discovery of the manuscripts, but this mostly a book about books. Most of the conversations between Mercer and Bruce focus on books they have bought, read or want to read, about literature and about authors.
Captivating and entertaining, Camino Island is a novel I highly recommend if you love to read about books.