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The Emperor of Ocean Park by Stephen L. Carter
In Stephen L. Carter's The Emperor of Ocean Park, Oliver Garland is a conservative judge from Ocean Park (a black community on Martha's Vineyard) whose nomination to the Supreme Court was denied because of his connections to a shady thug, with whom he'd made some unknown "arrangements." Broken, bitter, and drinking heavily afterwards, he's found dead of what appears to be a heart attack. His son, Talcott, trying to keep his grips on his own life, also tries to discover the mystery surrounding his father's death. This is not just a legal thriller set amid the black bourgeoisie, but also about the joys and pitfalls of family. Some reviewers praise The Emperor of Ocean Park highly (USA Today calls it a "compelling read") and others find it overwrought and overlong.