Everybody has just so many books in them. I think I have just one in me and it’s a comic book with bad artwork and is only about thirty pages long. John Grisham is no exception to the "just so many books" rule and I think he has hit his last one with The Summons.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s not a bad book. It had me turning pages for three days and I enjoyed the read but the ending came off fairly flat and predictable. That isn’t what Grisham is known for writing. This book seemed written more for fulfilling a contract than for the tales that I’m use to from him.
Actually, I think that he could have easily written the ending so that I would have been more pleased with the effect without actually changing the whodunnit part of it. This brings up another topic, derivitive works and copyright. What is wrong with someone getting an idea out of their head and onto paper when that idea is brought about by a previous work?
Right now I have an idea for a slight change in the ending of The Summons that would basically just add about three chapters to the book but I think that doing so, even though I’d only sharing the work with friends, that I would be infringing on Grisham’s copyright. For me this isn’t a problem, I just dwell on the idea for a day or so and then forget all about it, but some folks get these things in their head and can’t get them out until they put it on paper. There are other folks that would love to read derivative works like this. Why shouldn’t they be allowed to?