Tuesday, July 10, 2012

The Bookmaker by Chris Fraser review

Preston Walker, a living legend in his hometown of Oxford, Mississippi is dying. But before he goes, he has something he has to get off his chest. A secret so profound it would alter the landscape of American history. Trent Oster, a struggling writer and small time bookmaker is lured from his weary existence into Preston’s deceptively enticing world. Trent’s job is to capture Preston’s story and reveal the answer to the most asked question of the 20th century: Who killed the Kennedy’s? Take a gritty uncensored look into the exclusive world of illegal bookmaking combined with a mind-bending take on the Kennedy conspiracy. Chris Fraser’s gripping debut novel The Bookmaker, will keep the pages turning for traditional fiction readers, sports enthusiasts, history buffs, mystery fans and suspense aficionados alike. Step into a world that seldom reveals its secrets, but tread lightly as you may not like what you find

5 stars

The Bookmaker by Chris Fraser has a whole new take on the Kennedy deaths.  The conspiracy theories aren't wrong, but the source of them is unknown to everyone.

When a small time California bookie is offered a book deal as a way to pay off the debt that one of his clients has accumulated he gets a whole lot more than he thought.  Trent is just a young man trying to figure out what to do with his life while making his money as a bookie.  Since he went to school to be a writer he figures flying out to Oxford to talk to an old man about his story isn't any big deal, especially since it pays so well.  Upon arriving he steps into a whole new world.

Preston is an old man with a burning secret and a fatal disease.  In order to die with a clearer conscience he decides to dictate his story to a young writer who will not judge him as harshly as an established professional would.  When his grandson racks up a debt with a bookie who studied to be a writer he gets just what he wanted.

The Bookmaker is a remarkably well told story. Chris runs two storylines simultaneously taking the reader back in the past while Preston tells his story and keeping up with the current times with Trent's role in Preston's household.  All of the characters are well written and believable and the story itself even keeps grounded enough to be believable.  I was sucked into the story as soon as Trent arrived in the South and didn't want to put the book down after that.  The tragedy that Preston described made his story all the more real.  This is a great book and I'm glad that a review copy made it's way to me.

Review copy provided by the publisher.

7 comments:

  1. Cool! I live in Oxford, so I'll certainly grab this book. Thanks!

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  2. I love books that move back and forth through time, esp when they're done well. I'm not sure I would have looked twice at this book if not for your review! Thanks for the recomendation!

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    1. It really wasn't a book that I would look at normally, but the publisher contacted me and I decided to give it a shot. I'm very glad I did though Chris is a good guy and a talented author.

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  3. Thanks Scott. Got some bad news. The publisher is closing up shop. Soon this will be unavailable.

    Chris Fraser

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    1. That's terrible Chris! Will you be putting it out yourself at any point or do you not have rights to publish it for a while?

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