John Grisham has always been my favorite fiction writer. In fact, his books were a major influence on me when I started writing the Steve Stilwell thriller series. So, it should be no surprise that I really enjoyed Camino Winds. What made it particularly interesting is that the setting for the story is Camino Island, a fictional island just north of Jacksonville, Florida. The story begins as Hurricane Leo sets its sights on Camino Island, where bookstore owner and best-seller maker Bruce Cable hunkers down to ride out the storm. The storm hits and devastates the island, leaving a number of people dead, including local author Nelson Kerr, a friend of Bruce Cable’s. As Bruce is Nelson’s local point of contact, the police ask Bruce to come to Nelson’s home to identify the body. When Bruce sees his dead friend, he suspects foul play. What follows is vintage John Grisham, raising lots of possible suspects and slowly weeding them out until the story reaches its logical conclusion.
As an added bonus, I was stationed in Jacksonville on two separate occasions during my Navy career, so Camino Winds’ sultry summer nights and Hurricane Leo brought back memories of my time in Jacksonville watching storms pass up Florida’s east coast. We were fortunate, though, in that none hit Jacksonville when I was there. I also found the main character, bookstore owner Bruce Cable, particularly interesting because of his insight into the publishing industry, which has always intrigued me. I thoroughly enjoyed Camino Winds and think you will too.