Not exciting, not terrible, I'd say that The Brethren is kinda mediocre. But the fact is that I've listened to the audio book three times now since I purchased it back in 2004, and I think that I have to relegate it to a guilty fictional pleasure.
The Brethren is a "thriller" about three federally-incarcerated judges who have set up their own letter-writing entrapment scams, operating out of a Florida jail. The book revolves around their involvement with an up-in-coming congressman who is being set up for a White House run, sponsored by some powerful men.
The topic of 'letter-writing' already dates the book to pre-email, pre-Internet, pre-Facebook or any of the other anonymous social sites. The scams have upgraded with technology, but the book doesn't suffer from it; Grisham moves the pace of the colliding factors along such that it never drags or bores. The characters are well drawn, particularly the paternal CIA mastermind and the most scheming judge. And the book is strangely satisfying in the end, even though it is Grisham's trademark non-whopping end. Good, not great. Assuming this is the feel of a typical trade pulp paperback, good enough to entertain but not a helluva lot to dwell on after. Beach book.