Camino Winds (Camino Island, #2) by John Grisham Read Online (FREE)
“Pretty close. He never told me how much he received from the government. He did say that she had better lawyers and clearly won the divorce. I got the impression it was a brutal ordeal.”
“How well did you know him?”
“Have you had lunch?” Bruce was happy to share his peanut butter and crackers, but was suddenly nervous about offering food to a fairly hip Californian. No doubt she survived on nothing but raw vegetables and protein shakes.
She smiled and hesitated and said, “Actually, I’m starving.”
“Then step into my kitchen where the air is slightly cooler than out on the street.” She followed him to the snack bar and watched as he rummaged through the pantry and found a can of tomato soup. “Perfect,” she said.
“And for appetizers we can offer chunky peanut butter and saltines.”
“My favorite,” she said, much to his surprise.
He put the soup on and opened the peanut butter. “How well did I know Nelson Kerr? Well, I considered him a friend. We’re about the same age, with similar interests. He’s been here for several dinner parties. I’ve been to his place. We’ve had dinners out. My wife fixed him up with one of her friends but the romance lasted less than a month. He was not that aggressive with women. We spent time at the bookstore drinking coffee and talking about books and writers. I thought his pace was a bit slow for a genre author and encouraged him to write more, but I do that with most of my writers.”
“Yes. There’s a clan of them on the island and I’m the den mother. I encourage all of them to write more so I’ll have more to sell.”
“How well did Nelson sell?”
“His last book did about a hundred thousand copies in print and digital combined, and his numbers were steadily increasing. I pushed him to do a book a year. He was on the right trajectory with his career, but Nelson had a lazy streak. I said that to him once and he gave some lame excuse about still being tired from big law. I said that was nonsense.”
“Did you ever read his stuff before he sent it to New York?”
“No. With some writers I do, but I’m known to have a lot of opinions so most shy away from my editing. Nelson asked me to read his latest, said he had finished the first draft and was polishing up the second.” Bruce decided he would discuss the hard drive later. There was so much ground to cover.
He poured the soup in a bowl and presented it to her. She smiled and said, “Thanks.”
“What color wine do you think goes best with tomato soup?” he asked.
“Let’s postpone the wine.” She stirred the soup, blew on a spoonful, and tasted it. “Compliments to the chef.”
“Don’t mention it.”
“So, Bruce, was my brother murdered?”
He took a deep breath, walked to the fridge, opened it to fetch a beer, realized he’d had two already, removed nothing, closed the door and leaned against it with his arms folded across his chest. “I’m not sure, but a few things are certain. Number one, Nelson is dead.” He described Nelson’s body when they found him. He summarized Dr. Landrum’s summary of the autopsy and cause of death.