John Grisham fan from his first book. Now, I must admit - I haven't loved every one (last year's Gray Mountain was a miss for me.) But I really enjoyed his newest book - Rogue Lawyer.
My favourite characters are the non-conformists, those who colour outside of the lines. You just never know where such a character will take a story. Lawyer Sebastian Rudd definitely walks a questionable line. His clients are usually the ones no one else will take on, his office is a bulletproof van, his driver is his bodyguard/paralegal and he's not above chicanery and deals to get his clients off. Readers of legal thrillers may notice a resemblance to Michael Connelly's Lincoln Lawyer character. But Grisham puts his own spin and stamp on things.
Rogue Lawyer is almost a collection of short stories, but they're bound together as common threads are found in each - past cases and clients, Rudd's personal life, his ongoing dealings with the cops and prosecutors. I really enjoyed this format. Rather than one long, drawn out case, there were numerous and varied cases - all of them equally gripping - murder, abduction, death row, home invasion and more. I found myself eagerly awaiting the next trial, curious to see what Grisham would throw next at Rudd.
And yes, some of his motives are questionable, but I just couldn't help but like the guy. (I'd like to hear more from this character - a second book and a new slew of cases would be great.)
The courtroom scenes all benefit from Grisham's expertise. I am always fascinated by the behind the scenes look at the legal wrangling. And I wonder how many of the 'iffy' stratagems really do happen?
I chose to listen to Rogue Lawyer (the drive to work and back seems much shorter listening to a book instead of a radio station.) The reader was award winning narrator Mark Deakins - he has an 'attitude' to his voice that suited the mental image I had created for Sebastian. His reading is very expressive, capturing the tone, the pacing and the action of Rogue Lawyer. Listen to an excerpt of Rogue Lawyer. I was quite surprised to see the mixed bag of ratings for this title. Me? I really enjoyed it.