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The Pelican Brief - John Grisham

The Pelican Brief

Paperback

Published: November 1992
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Published: 21st April 2010
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John Grisham's bestselling backlist repackaged with fantastic new covers

Two Supreme Court Justices are dead. Their murders are connected only in one mind, and in one legal brief conceived by that mind.

Brilliant, beautiful and ambitious, New Orleans legal student Darby Shaw little realises that her speculative brief will penetrate to the highest levels of power in Washington and cause shockwaves there.

Shockwaves that will see her boyfriend atomised in a bomb blast, that will send hired killers chasing after her, that will propel her across the country to meet investigative reporter Gray Grantham, the one man who is as near to the truth as she is.

About the Author...

One day at the Dessoto County courthouse, John 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.

Since first publishing A Time to Kill in 1988, Grisham has written one novel a year 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 (2006) marked his first foray into non-fiction.

Gripping legal suspenser by the author of last year's hallucinatory The Firm - and an even stronger performance than that still-current bestseller. Grisham also strikes gold with public awareness of the furor over the Supreme Court nomination of Judge Thomas. Where The Firm clamped into the reader's greed for the perks of a supersuccessful young lawyer in an almost fantasy law firm, Grisham's second is a tale that baits its own hooks with the lures of All the President's Men. That much of what happens here happens regularly in suspense novels (sudden stranglings and murders) in no way lessens the novel's intensity and feeling of freshness - a freshness that springs in both novels from Grisham's focus on top law students, cloistered brains who find themselves raw beginners in the real world but afloat on cash. Here, second-year law student at Tulane Derby Shaw sets out to solve the seemingly motiveless simultaneous murders of two largely liberal Supreme Court judges who were killed two hours apart on the same night. A lone assassin or a conspiracy? Clearly someone wants the conservative Republican president, a grandfatherly nerd mainly interested in his golf game, to pack the already conservative Court. Darby reviews hundreds of the Court's upcoming cases and sees only one that fulfills the breadth of evil needed to account for such desperate measures as double murder: a multibillion-dollar oil venture in Louisiana that will kilt off the state's beloved but endangered brown pelican. Derby's brief on this "fictional" case finds its way to the White House, the FBI, and the CIA. Then Darby's lover, her constitutional-law professor, to whom she has shown the brief, is blown up in a car-bomb explosion meant also to have killed Darby. The story's vitality springs from Grisham's relentless enlivening of Derby's fears as she flees about the country in a closing web of killers while trying to help Washington Post reporter Gray Grantham get the goods on the baddies in a newsbreak bigger than Watergate. Must entertainment for legal folk. Should outsell The Firm. (Kirkus Reviews)

ISBN: 9780099993803
ISBN-10: 0099993805
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 432
Published: November 1992
Dimensions (cm): 17.8 x 11.0  x 3.1
Weight (kg): 0.26