Princeton University really does have some original F. Scott Fitzgerald manuscripts, probably in a high security vault, and they are Grisham's target for of a gang of thieves who plot to steal them in this book.
Their plan works and then they have to find a way to sell them. The manuscripts are reported to be priceless, but 25 million is a starting value.
The thieves vanish, and the FBI’s Rare Asset Recovery Unit starts to investigate, and so does the insurance company. Both know that Bruce Kable, a successful book dealer who has a well known book store on Camino Island could be involved. This business is a dark business but Bruce likely knows the players.
Mercer Mann is a young woman, collage English teacher, and a struggling writer, burdened by debts. She had spent many summers as a kid on Florida's Camino Island in her grandmother's beach cottage.
Mercer receives an offer she can't refuse: to return to the peace of the island, to write her novel - and get close to a certain infamous bookseller, and his interesting collection of manuscripts.
Mercer and Bruce get to know each other and it leads to findings that without her would not have been found. Her time with the book dealer is an interesting sub story.
No lawyers or judges in this book. This fact is unusual for John Grisham, since the law, lawyers, and judges are a key part of his formula for success, but it is a very exciting book without that element.