The Firm: A Novel (Google eBook)

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Random House Publishing Group, Mar 16, 2010 - Fiction - 560 pages
12 Reviews
BONUS: This edition contains an Introduction to the NBC TV series and script pages from the pilot episode of NBC's The Firm and an excerpt from John Grisham's The Litigators.

When Mitch McDeere signed on with Bendini, Lambert & Locke of Memphis, he thought that he and his beautiful wife, Abby, were on their way. The firm leased him a BMW, paid off his school loans, arranged a mortgage, and hired the McDeeres a decorator. Mitch should have remembered what his brother Ray–doing fifteen years in a Tennessee jail–already knew: You never get nothing for nothing. Now the FBI has the lowdown on Mitch’s firm and needs his help. Mitch is caught between a rock and a hard place, with no choice–if he wants to live.

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I enjoy this book. as well as the movie well written and the movie was good as well.

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“The Firm” is a legal thriller about Mitchell McDeere who graduated out of Harvard Law School and is then employed by a small but prestigious firm in Memphis- “Bendini, Lambert & Locke”. The story deals with how Mitch had to give up his posh life after learning of the truth of his firm and helps the FBI indict the firm along with Morolto family.
List of Characters
I. Mitchell Y. McDeere: The protagonist; a bright, keen young man who is “hungry” for success and partnership in the firm.
II. Abby McDeere: Wife of Mitch and a school-teacher at a prominent school. She is stressed by the long-working hours and the truth of the firm, but eventually helps Mitch escape.
III. Wayne Tarrance: An FBI agent who reveals the truth of the firm to Mitch. He is an organized crime specialist who is determined to indict the firm along with it the entire Morolto family.
IV. Ray McDeere: Brother of Mitch who is a convicted felon. He escapes prison with the help of the FBI. He is a great linguist in several languages who later aids in Mitch’s escape.
V. Oliver Lambert: He is the head of the firm. He is described as having kind, grey eyes and has earned the name of the “grandfather” of the firm.
VI. Nathan Locke: A senior partner in the firm who had served the Moroltos since the age of ten. He is evil, eccentric and described as having “black-laser eyes”.
VII. Eddie Lomax: An ex-con and a prison friend of Ray. He works as a private investigator for Mitch who is later murdered by one of Moroltos gunmen.
My Views
This story was a sizzler right from the opening pages, even as Mitch is about to be interviewed and the Managing partners are sizing him up in their chambers. This carries through as the interview progresses and they hook him with their irresistible offers.
As I read, I could feel Mitch's growing uneasiness which he fails to express to his wife Abby. But they both ignore these warnings and Mitch goes ahead and joins the firm. Sometimes certain things take their own course, probably what is termed as destiny.
Grisham's style of writing is unique. He keeps the readers totally hooked but it is not the fast paced heady action; however the story as it unfolds keeps you interested throughout. “The Firm” is not a complex character study. It is highly entertaining and well worth the ride.

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About the author (2010)

Long before his name became synonymous with the modern legal thriller, John Grisham was working 60-70 hours a week at a small Southaven, Mississippi law practice, squeezing in time before going to the office and during courtroom recesses to work on his hobby—writing his first novel.

Born on February 8, 1955 in Jonesboro, Arkansas, to a construction worker and a homemaker, John Grisham as a child dreamed of being a professional baseball player. Realizing he didn't have the right stuff for a pro career, he shifted gears and majored in accounting at Mississippi State University. After graduating from law school at Ole Miss in 1981, he went on to practice law for nearly a decade in Southaven, specializing in criminal defense and personal injury litigation. In 1983, he was elected to the state House of Representatives and served until 1990.

One day at the DeSoto County courthouse, Grisham overheard the harrowing testimony of a twelve-year-old rape victim and was inspired to start a novel exploring what would have happened if the girl's father had murdered her assailants. Getting up at 5 a.m. every day to get in several hours of writing time before heading off to work, Grisham spent three years on A Time to Kill and finished it in 1987. Initially rejected by many publishers, it was eventually bought by Wynwood Press, who gave it a modest 5,000 copy printing and published it in June 1988.

That might have put an end to Grisham's hobby. However, he had already begun his next book, and it would quickly turn that hobby into a new full-time career—and spark one of publishing's greatest success stories. The day after Grisham completed A Time to Kill, he began work on another novel, the story of a hotshot young attorney lured to an apparently perfect law firm that was not what it appeared. When he sold the film rights to The Firm to Paramount Pictures for $600,000, Grisham suddenly became a hot property among publishers, and book rights were bought by Doubleday. Spending 47 weeks on The New York Times bestseller list, The Firm became the bestselling novel of 1991.

The successes of The Pelican Brief, which hit number one on the New York Times bestseller list, and The Client, which debuted at number one, confirmed Grisham's reputation as the master of the legal thriller. Grisham's success even renewed interest in A Time to Kill, which was republished in hardcover by Doubleday and then in paperback by Dell. This time around, it was a bestseller.

Since first publishing A Time to Kill in 1988, Grisham has written one novel a year (his other books are The Firm, The Pelican Brief, The Client, The Chamber, The Rainmaker, The Runaway Jury, The Partner, The Street Lawyer, The Testament, The Brethren, A Painted House, Skipping Christmas, The Summons, The King of Torts, Bleachers, The Last Juror, The Broker, Playing for Pizza, and The Appeal) and all of them have become international bestsellers. There are currently over 225 million John Grisham books in print worldwide, which have been translated into 29 languages. Nine of his novels have been turned into films (The Firm, The Pelican Brief, The Client, A Time to Kill, The Rainmaker, The Chamber, A Painted House, The Runaway Jury, and Skipping Christmas), as was an original screenplay, The Gingerbread Man. The Innocent Man (October 2006) marked his first foray into non-fiction.

Grisham lives with his wife Renee and their two children Ty and Shea. The family splits their time between their Victorian home on a farm in Mississippi and a plantation near Charlottesville, VA.

Grisham took time off from writing for several months in 1996 to return, after a five-year hiatus, to the courtroom. He was honoring a commitment made before he had retired from the law to become a full-time writer: representing the family of a railroad brakeman killed when he was pinned between two cars. Preparing his case with the same passion and dedication as his books' protagonists, Grisham successfully argued his clients' case, earning them a jury award of $683,500—the biggest verdict of his career.

When he's not writing, Grisham devotes time to charitable causes, including most recently his Rebuild The Coast Fund, which raised 8.8 million dollars for Gulf Coast relief in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. He also keeps up with his greatest passion: baseball. The man who dreamed of being a professional baseball player now serves as the local Little League commissioner. The six ballfields he built on his property have played host to over 350 kids on 26 Little League teams.

From the Paperback edition.

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