Hard to believe, but there was a time when the word "lawyer" wasn't synonymous with "criminal," and the idea of a law firm controlled by the Mafia was an outlandish proposition. This intelligent, ensnaring story came out of nowhere--Oxford, Mississippi, where Grisham was a small-town lawyer--and quickly catapulted to the top of the bestseller list, with good reason. Mitch McDeere, the appealing hero, is a poor kid whose only assets are a first-class mind, a Harvard law degree, and a beautiful, loving wife. When a Memphis law firm makes him an offer he really can't refuse, he trades his old Nissan for a new BMW, his cramped apartment for a house in the best part of town, and puts in long hours finding tax shelters for Texans who'd rather pay a lawyer than the IRS. Nothing criminal about that. He'd be set for life, if only associates at the firm didn't have a funny habit of dying, and the FBI wasn't trying to get Mitch to turn his colleagues in. The tempo and pacing are brilliant, the thrills keep coming, and the finish has a wonderful ironic flourish. It's not hard to see why Grisham changed the genre permanently with this one, and few of his colleagues in a very crowded field come close to equaling him. |
Source: Jane Adams, Amazon.com.
For a young lawyer on the make, it was an offer he couldn't refuse: a position at a law firm where the bucks, billable hours, and benefits are over the top. It's a dream job for an up-and-comer--if he can overlook the uneasy feeling he gets at the office. Then an FBI investigation plunges the straight and narrow attorney into a nightmare of terror and intrigue, with no choice but to pit his wits, ethics, and legal skills against the firm's deadly secrets--if he hopes to stay alive . . .