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The Brethren | [John Grisham]

The Brethren

In a minimum security federal prison known as Trumble, three former judges who call themselves the Brethren are quietly writing letters to unsuspecting victims of a monumental mail scam. Much to their delight, the money is pouring in. But now they've ensnared the wrong man and the Brethren's days of marking time are over.
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Publisher's Summary

Trumble is a minimum security federal prison, a "camp," home to the usual assortment of relatively harmless criminals - drug dealers, bank robbers, swindlers, embezzlers, tax evaders, two Wall Street crooks, one doctor, and at least five lawyers. And three former judges who call themselves the Brethren: one from Texas, one from California, and one from Mississippi. They meet each day in the law library, their turf at Trumble, where they write briefs, handle cases for other inmates, practice law without a license, and sometimes dispense jailhouse justice. And they spend hours writing letters. They are fine-tuning a mail scam, and it's starting to really work. The money is pouring in. Then their little scam goes awry. It ensnares the wrong victim, a powerful man outside, a man with dangerous friends. The Brethren's days of quietly marking time are over.

©2000 Belfrey Holdings, Inc.; (P)2000 Random House, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (761 )
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4.2 (246 )
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Story
4.3 (246 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Sherry Brunswick, Maine, United States 07-16-12
    Sherry Brunswick, Maine, United States 07-16-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Very dated, unfortunately"
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    I expect John Grisham would change it, too, now. A huge part of the plot is a scam to trap and extort gay men, and everyone in the book treats this as though it is the most horrific, dirty, unacceptable secret ever. Just seems both dated and impossibly silly in this day and age, when being gay is not such a big deal. But at times it came off as really homophobic.


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    Actually I'm not there yet.


    Would you listen to another book narrated by Frank Muller?

    No, I'm going to try to avoid him -- he's very breathy, trailing off into an ominous whisper even on very ordinary sentences.

    Pretty good job doing a variety of voices, so if you don't mind a little overdramatic breathy whispering, he might not bug you.


    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christopher Allen walker 08-12-05 Listener Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Very interesting plot."

    but ultimately still a Grisham novel... lack of depth is a problem.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Charles Brush Prairie, Washington, United States 07-21-15
    Charles Brush Prairie, Washington, United States 07-21-15
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    4
    4
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I wonder if this is really a fictional story!"
    What made the experience of listening to The Brethren the most enjoyable?

    The story line never went where you expected. Sometimes the ending of a novel is telegraphed about half way though. Not in this book.


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    This plot kept me engaged from the very beginning. Very enjoyable.


    Would you listen to another book narrated by Frank Muller?

    I'm not sure. I think Mr Muller is an acquired taste. He is a little breathy and melodramatic but it didn't ruin the book by any means.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    This was a good entertaining book but also a bit thought provoking. Saying any more would spoil the book for someone who hasn't read it. Let's just say that I hope it is work of fiction.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kentucky Woman Louisville, KY United States 06-03-15
    Kentucky Woman Louisville, KY United States 06-03-15 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Intriguing story, unlikable characters"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    It was entertaining


    Would you recommend The Brethren to your friends? Why or why not?

    John Grisham's books are always easy to listen to and he weaves a good tale. This one seemed a bit dated in light of events of the twenty-first century.


    Any additional comments?

    Good book, not great

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gilbert APO, AE, United States 01-08-15
    Gilbert APO, AE, United States 01-08-15 Member Since 2012

    Woody

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A Fun Listen"

    The story is classic Grisham in its own right. And Frank Muller's narration is an excellent blending of the story and the presentation.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    W Perry Hall 11-25-14 Member Since 2015

    Atty/CPA, The South

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Shallow, Contrived and Uninteresting"

    I'm familiar with the prison pen pal scams in LA and MS. Maybe that's why this novel seemed like Grisham picked the plot from his list of "maybe's," yet then when writing it his heart just wasn't there. I'm a fan of much of Grisham's work, but this one seemed neither real nor true, and it lacked a shred of suspense, which is normally Grisham's strongest suit. Written as if Grisham just phoned it in.

    I was very disappointed.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    wk san diego, US, Canada 09-04-14
    wk san diego, US, Canada 09-04-14 Member Since 2010
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    4
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    Story
    "Words and reader perfect together"
    What did you love best about The Brethren?

    The reader's ability to accent the irony and humor in the story


    What did you like best about this story?

    Enjoy all the John Grisham books. This one was a little less heavy and a little more fun than some with more serious story lines.


    Have you listened to any of Frank Muller’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    They are all great. He has a lot of fun with the characters Really enjoy his reads.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Well there were parts that made me laugh, which was refreshing, as John Grisham's books can be weighty at times.


    Any additional comments?

    On the road a lot, so listen to many audio books, never disappointed with John Grisham's writing or Frank Muller's reading.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Briley ALEXANDRIA, VA, United States 10-15-13
    Briley ALEXANDRIA, VA, United States 10-15-13 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Solid Read"

    This story was interesting, propelled along by well written and multidimensional characters. It wasn't Grisham's most thrilling page turner, but I absolutely enjoyed it and would recommend it. The two main story lines seem oddly divergent at first, but stick with it. The narration makes this even better. I wish Frank was still around to read future Grisham books. He does the best job out of them all. Enjoy.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tricia Elkridge, MD, United States 02-02-13
    Tricia Elkridge, MD, United States 02-02-13 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Grisham at his best!"

    Entertaining story, top notch narration, and subtle and not-so-subtle jabs at our legal system. A great listen !

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kathy Payson, UT, United States 01-05-13
    Kathy Payson, UT, United States 01-05-13
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    "GRISHAM GREAT"

    I loved this book for many reasons, smart, witty, interesting characters, great story plot. It kept me interested and not wanting to put it down. I love most of Grishams books!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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