In his final hours in the Oval Office, the outgoing president grants a controversial last-minute pardon to Joel Backman, a notorious Washington power broker who has spent the last six years hidden away in a federal prison. What no one knows is that the president issues the pardon only after receiving enormous pressure from the CIA. It seems Backman, in his power-broker heyday, may have obtained secrets that compromise the world's most sophisticated satellite surveillance system.
Backman is quietly smuggled out of the country in a military cargo plane, given a new name, a new identity, and a new home in Italy. Eventually, after he has settled into his new life, the CIA will leak his whereabouts to the Israelis, the Russians, the Chinese, and the Saudis. Then the CIA will do what it does best: sit back and watch. The question is not whether Backman will survive - there is no chance of that. The question the CIA needs answered is, who will kill him?
A Painted House
The hill people and the Mexicans arrived on the same day. It was a Wednesday, early in September, 1952. The Cardinals were five games behind the Dodgers with three weeks to go, and the season looked hopeless.
The cotton, however, was waist-high to my father, over my head, and he and my grandfather could be heard before supper whispering words that were seldom heard. It could be a "good crop".
Thus begins the new novel from John Grisham, a story inspired by his own childhood in rural Arkansas. The narrator is a farm boy named Luke Chandler, age seven, who lives in the cotton fields with his parents and grandparents in a little house that's never been painted. The Chandlers farm 80 acres that they rent, not own, and when the cotton is ready they hire a truckload of Mexicans and a family from the Ozarks to help harvest it.
For six weeks they pick cotton, battling the heat, the rain, the fatigue, and, sometimes, one another. As the weeks pass Luke sees and hears things no seven-year-old could possibly be prepared for, and finds himself keeping secrets that not only threaten the crop but will change the lives of the Chandlers forever.
In his first collection of short stories John Grisham takes us back to Ford County, Mississippi, the setting of his first novel, A Time To Kill.
Wheelchair-bound Inez Graney and her two older sons, Leon and Butch, take a bizarre road trip through the Mississippi Delta to visit the youngest Graney brother, Raymond, who's been locked away on death row for 11 years. It could well be their last visit.
Mack Stafford, a hard-drinking and low-grossing run-of-the-mill divorce lawyer gets a miracle phone call with a completely unexpected offer to settle some old, forgotten cases for more money than he has ever seen. Mack is suddenly bored with the law, fed up with his wife and his life, and makes drastic plans to finally escape.
Quiet, dull Sidney perfects his blackjack skills in hopes of bringing down the casino empire of Clanton's most ambitious hustler, Bobby Carl Leach, who, among other crimes, has stolen Sidney's wife.
Three good ol' boys from rural Ford County begin a journey to the big city of Memphis to give blood to a grievously injured friend. However, they are unable to drive past a beer store as the trip takes longer and longer. The journey comes to an abrupt end when they make a fateful stop at a Memphis strip club.
One of the hazards of litigating against people in a small town is that one day, long after the trial, you will probably come face to face with someone you've beaten in a lawsuit. Lawyer Stanley Wade bumps into an old adversary, a man with a long memory, and the encounter becomes a violent ordeal.
Clanton is rocked with the rumor that the gay son of a prominent family has finally come home, to die. Of AIDS. Fear permeates the town as gossip runs unabated.
Featuring a cast of characters you'll never forget, these stories bring Ford County to vivid and colorful life. Often hilarious, frequently moving, and always entertaining, this collection makes it abundantly clear why John Grisham is our most popular storyteller.
Neely Crenshaw was once star quarterback for Messina High School's football team. His playing days ended with a sickening injury. Afterwards his life went nowhere: his marriage foundered and his real estate business drifted. For fifteen years he's been trying to forget his glorious past as sporting hero but hasn't been able to move on. But now the man who moulded him, Coach Eddie Rake, is dying and Neely returns to Messina. Rake has acted as football coach for 34 years at Messina High; his teams have won 13 state championships and been on an 84 game unbeaten streak.
The town idolizes him. Players old and young have returned to pay their respects. Neely congregates with them on the bleachers as they wait for Rake to finally pass away. It is in the many conversations and revelations that follow that Neely can confront what his explosive relationship with Rake really meant to him and, in the moment of loss, find redemption.
Imagine a year without Christmas. No crowded shops, no corny office parties, no fruitcakes, no unwanted presents. That's just what Luther and Nora Krank have in mind when they decide that, just this once, they'll skip the holiday altogether.
Theirs will be the only house on the street without a rooftop Frosty the Snowman; they won't be hosting their annual Christmas Eve bash; they aren't even going to have a tree. They won't need one, because come December 25 they're setting sail on a Caribbean cruise. But, as this weary couple is about to discover, skipping Christmas brings enormous consequences, and isn't half as easy as they'd imagined.
Playing for Pizza
Rick Dockery was the third-string quarterback for the Cleveland Browns. In the deciding game at the climax of the season, to the surprise and dismay of virtually everyone, Rick actually got into the game. With a 17-point lead and just minutes to go, Rick provided what was arguably the worst single performance in the history of the National Football League. Overnight, he became a national laughing stock and, of course, was immediately dropped by the Browns and shunned by all other teams.
But all Rick knows is American football, and he insists that his agent, Arnie, find a team that needs him. Against enormous odds, Arnie finally locates just such a team and informs Rick that, miraculously, he can in fact now be a starting quarterback. Great says Rick - for which team?
The mighty Panthers of Parma, Italy.
Yes, Italians do play American football, to one degree or another, and the Parma Panthers desperately want a player from the home of American football at their helm. So Rick reluctantly agrees to play for the Panthers, at least until a better offer comes along, and heads off to Italy. He knows nothing about Parma (not even where it is), has never been to Europe, and doesn't speak or understand a word of Italian.
The King of Torts
The Office of the Public Defender is not known as a training ground for bright young litigators. Clay Carter has been there too long, and, like most of his colleagues, dreams of a better job in a real firm. When he reluctantly takes the case of a young man charged with a random street killing, he assumes it is just another of the many senseless murders that hit D.C. every week.
As he digs into the background of his client, Clay stumbles upon a conspiracy too horrible to believe. He suddenly finds himself in the middle of a complex case against one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world, looking at the kind of enormous settlement that would totally change his life, that would make him, almost overnight, the legal profession's newest king of torts.
He's their lawyer. He's their insider. He's their spy.
Kyle McAvoy grew up in his father’s small-town law office in York, Pennsylvania. He excelled in college, was elected editor-in-chief of The Yale Law Journal, and his future has limitless potential.
But Kyle has a secret, a dark one, an episode from college that he has tried to forget. The secret, though, falls into the hands of the wrong people, and Kyle is forced to take a job he doesn’t want - even though it’s a job most law students can only dream about.
Three months after leaving Yale, Kyle becomes an associate at the largest law firm in the world, where, in addition to practicing law, he is expected to lie, steal, and take part in a scheme that could send him to prison, if not get him killed.
With an unforgettable cast of characters and villains - from Baxter Tate, a drug-addled trust-fund kid and possible rapist, to Dale, a pretty but seemingly quiet former math teacher who shares Kyle’s “cubicle” at the law firm, to two of the most powerful and fiercely competitive defence contractors in the country - and featuring all the twists and turns that have made John Grisham the most popular storyteller in the world, The Associate is vintage Grisham.
Troy Phelan is a self-made billionaire, one of the richest men in the United States. He is also eccentric, reclusive, confined to a wheelchair, and looking for a way to die. His heirs, to no one's surprise - especially Troy's - are circling like vultures.
Nate O'Riley is a high-octane Washington litigator who's lived too hard, too fast, for too long. His second marriage is a shambles, and he is emerging from his fourth stay in rehab armed with little more than his fragile sobriety, good intentions, and resilient sense of humour. Returning to the real world is always difficult, but this time it's going to be murder.
Rachel Lane is a young woman who chose to give her life to God, who walked away from the modern world with all its strivings and trappings and encumbrances, and went to live and work with a primitive tribe of Indians in the deepest jungles of Brazil.
The Pelican Brief
In suburban Georgetown, a killer's Reeboks whisper on the floor of a posh home. In a seedy D.C. porno house, a patron is swiftly garrotted to death. The next day America learns that two of its Supreme Court justices have been assassinated. And in New Orleans, a young law student prepares a legal brief. To Darby Shaw it was no more than a legal shot in the dark, a brilliant guess. To the Washington establishment it's political dynamite. Suddenly Darby is witness to a murder - a murder intended for her. Going underground, she finds that there is only one person - an ambitious reporter after a newsbreak hotter than Watergate - she can trust to help her piece together the deadly puzzle. Somewhere between the bayous of Louisiana and the White House's inner sanctums, a violent cover-up is being engineered. For someone has read Darby's brief - someone who will stop at nothing to destroy the evidence of an unthinkable crime.
It's summer in Memphis. The sweat is sticking to Rudy Baylor's shirt and creditors are nipping at his heels. Once he had aspirations of breezing through law school and punching his ticket to the good life. Now he doesn't have a job or a prayer - except for one: an insurance dispute that leaves a family devastated and opens the door for a lawsuit, if Rudy can find a way to file it. By the time Rudy gets to court, a heavyweight corporate defense team is there to meet him. And suddenly he's in over his head, plunged into a nightmare of lies and legal maneuverings. A case that started small is exploding into a thunderous million-dollar war of nerves, skill, and outright violence - a fight that could cost one young lawyer his life, or turn him into the biggest rainmaker in the land.
In the corridors of Chicago's top law firm: 26-year-old Adam Hall stands on the brink of a brilliant legal career. Now he is risking it all for a death-row killer and an impossible case. Maximum Security Unit, Mississippi State Prison: Sam Cayhall is a former Klansman and unrepentant racist now facing the death penalty for a fatal bombing in 1967. He has run out of chances - except for one: the young, liberal Chicago lawyer who just happens to be his grandson. While the executioners prepare the gas chamber, while the protesters gather and the TV cameras wait, Adam has only days, hours, minutes to save his client. For between the two men is a chasm of shame, family lies, and secrets - including the one secret that could save Sam Cayhall's life...or cost Adam his.
They watched Danilo Silva for days before they finally grabbed him. He was living alone, a quiet life on a shady street in Brazil; a simple life in a modest home, certainly not one of luxury. Certainly no evidence of the fortune they thought he had stolen. He was much thinner and his face had been altered. He spoke a different language, and spoke it very well. But Danilo had a past with many chapters. Four years earlier he had been Patrick Lanigan, a young partner in a prominent Biloxi law firm. He had a pretty wife, a new daughter, and a bright future. Then one cold winter night Patrick was trapped in a burning car and died a horrible death. When he was buried his casket held nothing more than his ashes. From a short distance away, Patrick watched his own burial. Then he fled. Six weeks later, a fortune was stolen from his ex-law firm's offshore account. And Patrick fled some more. But they found him.
The Street Lawyer
Michael was in a hurry. He was scrambling up the ladder at Drake & Sweeney, a giant D.C. law firm with 800 lawyers. The money was good and getting better; a partnership was three years away. He was a rising star with no time to waste, no time to stop, no time to toss a few coins into the cups of panhandlers. No time for a conscience.
But a violent encounter with a homeless man stopped him cold. Michael survived; his assailant did not. Who was this man? Michael did some digging, and learned that he was a mentally ill veteran who'd been in and out of shelters for many years. Then Michael dug a little deeper, and found a dirty secret, and the secret involved Drake & Sweeney.
A US State Senator is dead. Only Mark Sway knows where the body is hidden.
And he's eleven years old.
The FBI want him to tell them where it is, regardless of the risk to the boy and his family.
The killer wants to silence him permanently.
Reggie Love has only been practising law for five years, but she agrees to represent Mark pro bono, knowing she's his best hope for survival. Against the twin threats of the cold-hearted American state and the schemes of a cold-blooded killer, Reggie must fight the case of her life.
Or it might be the last case of her life.
A Time to Kill
The multi-million copy best-selling thriller that introduced Jake Brigance to Clanton and inspired a sequel, Sycamore Row.
When Carl Lee Hailey guns down the hoodlums who have raped his 10-year-old daughter, the people of Clanton see it as a crime of blood and call for his acquittal. But when extremists outside Clanton hear that a black man has killed two white men, they invade the town, determined to destroy anything and anyone that opposes their sense of justice. Jake Brigance has been hired to defend Hailey. It's the kind of case that can make or break a young lawyer. But in the maelstrom of Clanton, it is also the kind of case that could get a young lawyer killed.
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