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Book Review: The Litigators

Author: John Grisham

Publisher: Doubleday, October, 2011

Genre: Legal Thriller

My Rating: B+

I stopped by the library the other day and picked up a copy of The Litigators. It’s John Grisham’s latest legal thriller. I have several other books I’m reading right now but I thought I’d sit down and read just the first chapter. Hours later I looked up, still reading this novel. I ended up spending the weekend reading it.

This is the story of David Fink, a thirty-something Harvard-trained attorney. When the story opens he is freaking out about going to work. at the mega-law firm where he works 100 hours a week. At the last minute he jumps off the elevator and spends the day at a bar. When the bartender puts him in a cab at the end of the day, he sees the address on the side of a bus of one of those “ambulance chasing” law firms. He has the cab-driver take him there. He signs on as the third partner in what is obviously an inept and disfunctional law firm.

One of the partners in this new firm, Wally, thinks he’s discovered a gold mine when he decides to go after a big pharmaceutical company. He believes one of the company’s drugs is killing people. He ropes in his other partner and now David. Even I could tell he was making loads of mistakes in his campaign. But I kept reading because I was sure that somehow the young lawyer, David Fink, would pull it out in the end.

This is the old John Grisham at his best. He is so good at showing the slimy side of the legal profession. Most people, including me, love reading about the excesses and low morals of some of the big corporate law firms. That’s all here in The Litigators. But, this is also a good, humorous look at one on the firms at the opposite end of the legal world. It was very interesting to see that world. They literally visited car crashers, hospital rooms, and funeral homes looking for clients.

The story does have a good ending. Whether you are a John Grisham fan or not, this is a story I will suggest you try. Like me, you will probably be amazed that you blocked out the real world for hours as you became absorbed in this story.

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