Monday, May 21, 2012

Current Reading: Political News or the Likes of John Grisham?

Grisham Speaks to Keenum Leadership Forum
John Grisham at Keenum Leadership Forum (Photo credit: msulibrary1)
WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 27:  Hand-made signs ...
Protest signs seen during Occupy DC and Occupy K Street near the White House 10/27/2011 (Image credit: Getty Images via @daylife)
Around Washington, DC, where I live, the subjects of politics and power are common denominators all the time, with heightened intensity near election time, about two too-early years in advance.

Gimmicks and techniques for delivering political news vary, like the difference between throwing words rather than delivering well-thought-out observations and well-researched facts.

Did you see the footage of rare but frustrating expedited deliveries in the news recently? A couple of rogue employees of a private package delivery company had been throwing customers' packages over fences and into the weeds, so to speak...not exactly at the front door. It's like that with certain elements of election coverage, political reporting, and commentating today, as words and thoughts are thrown and bogged down in political weeds. Some hit hard surfaces but can't break, being as light as cotton candy: lots of empty air inside the packaging.
Don't doubt me now. I do read some of that stuff, sometimes seeing through it and sometimes not until clarifications come to light later. That may be why I turn to good fiction stories, rather than bad news fiction. Really, the weaker the quality of news reporting, the stronger the pull of reading page-turner suspense fiction.      

Last night I came to the end of The Litigator by John Grisham. What number is this newest by Grisham? Maybe his 20th or so legal thriller? With this one, Mr. Grisham brought a turbulent story with humor and serious fact and repercussions in a way that gives lots of smiles. Positive is the final effect, not boredom. And I say, "Grisham did it again!" He's made up a whopper of a tale based on believable events of flawed but compelling characters, Harvard and not, with current events, product industry troubles, stock market changes, courts, and lawyers. The info, humor, and suspense would make a good movie if adapted, cast, and directed by filmmakers that know their stuff. Could that ever happen with the increasingly boring political campaign attacks? Not gonna happen, methinks. I LOL'd more than a few times on this Grisham joy ride with Chicago litigation and litigants, tort rapaciousness running amok, and K Street (DC) lobbyists' costly shenanigans. Mr. Grisham seems to know today's K Street with its new construction for shiny new high-rises for lobbyists in that part of town.   

John Grisham is one of many talented story tellers. I check out library books by the dozen and realize all the time how many more little-known, super smart, and talented writers there are. Some are writing detective/mystery fiction, including historical fiction as well as contemporary themes.

They don't throw words around carelessly or with obscuring cleverness. They don't reek of useless negativism or mean exaggerations except to show the true colors of both, using them to bring together suspense and enjoyment altogether. The author nails the conclusion at perfect speed with just the right tension up to the end. It's all positive for the best thriller effects.  

If you read the newspapers, you have time to read, so why not balance it with some really good fiction that admits it's fiction? Yeah!

Copyright (c)2012 Opinari Writers
Enhanced by Zemanta


  1. Agree with your opinion big time. Nowadays when I read the paper the questions I ask is "who is this journalist supporting"; "oh yeah! would he have said the same about the next person"; "really - is this the most important thing that happened today!"

    Most journalism is pure yellow in colour - unfortunately the whole community is losing respect and the most important currency a publication needs - credibility.

    Very well put! Fiction that claims to be fiction is honest and slowly but surely more and more people will read Grisham instead of a news paper.

  2. Thanks for reading and commenting. Return anytime.