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Update  November, 2019

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Book Review

Is this the end for Juan Cabrillo and his team?

“Final Option,” Putnam, by Clive Cussler and Boyd Morrison

Jeff Ayers

Readers of this ongoing “Oregon Files” series will recognize the standard opening of a Clive Cussler novel, but it quickly takes a huge turn and becomes an all-out nonstop action thriller.

It seems like a typical assignment to rescue three American spies in Brazil, but Juan Cabrillo and the crew of the Oregon have cruised into a deadly trap. A ghost has been resurrected, and now he’s after Cabrillo. He knows about all about the Oregon and commands a vessel that is virtually identical. He has a team with similar talents, and the only thing in the way of this ghost’s plan for domination is Cabrillo being alive. That soon will change.

Once Cabrillo learns about the existence of a man he thought was dead and the weapons at his fingertips, he knows the ensuing cat-and-mouse game will be the most difficult battle he’s ever encountered. Especially since his enemy always seems to be one step ahead of him.

Boyd Morrison has taken this Clive Cussler series to new heights, and “Final Option” is the best one yet. The story hits the gas pedal and never taps the brakes. Having an enemy that is essentially a mirror image of the hero adds extra suspense and mayhem. The characters truly seem in jeopardy, and nothing will ever be the same. Cussler and Morrison have written another guaranteed bestseller. (AP)

Grisham’s ‘The Guardians’ is suspenseful thriller

“The Guardians: a Novel,” published by Doubleday, by John Grisham.

Jeff Ayers

In John Grisham’s latest novel, “The Guardians,” a former priest named Cullen Post works for an organization called Guardian Ministries that scours court transcripts and personal letters from convicts to determine if someone is wrongfully imprisoned for a crime he or she didn’t commit. If the organization believes without a doubt that the potential client is innocent, it will do everything it can within the boundaries of the law to free an innocent person, investigating and pushing for a new trial.

Quincy Miller has been in prison for 22 years — and still claims his innocence. A young lawyer was murdered, and suspicion quickly turned to Miller pulling the trigger. He says a fellow inmate fabricated a story about Miller confessing, and his ex-wife claimed that he owned several guns, which also wasn’t true. Another witness lied about seeing him flee the scene. Miller swears he never owned a gun, wasn’t anywhere in the area that night and that a key piece of evidence that later disappeared was planted.

It’s a bit much to believe that so many folks would be involved in a miscarriage of justice, but Post believes Miller and begins to dig into what happened that fateful night.

Grisham again delivers a suspenseful thriller mixed with powerful themes such as false incarceration, the death penalty and how the legal system shows prejudice. The Guardian team of characters is first-rate, and Miller’s attitude and mannerisms will have readers questioning what truth means in the world of the legal system.


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Is this the end for Juan Cabrillo and his team?

Grisham’s ‘The Guardians’ is suspenseful thriller