Saturday, February 25, 2017

Book Review: THE CONFESSION, by John Grisham

John Grisham
Doubleday, 2010
420 pages
Legal Thriller

I feel THE CONFESSION is John Grisham getting back to John Grisham. After reading THE BROKER I was worried the man had lost his juju. However, THE CONFESSION restored my faith in the legal thriller.

Donte Drumm is on death roll. In less than a week he will be executed in Texas for the abduction, rape, and murder of Nicole Yaber. Without a body, or any physical evidence, the prosecution moved forward getting the black male the death penalty on a forced confession. After over fifteen hours of interrogation by police, Drumm, a high school football player, finally admitted murdering a white cheerleader.

A Dead Body Is Not Required In Texas

In Kansas a vagrant-of-a-man, Travis Boyette visits a small church. He speaks with the pastor, Keith Schroeder and confesses to the killing of Nicole Yaber.

In Texas, Drumm's attorney, Robbie Flak, and the Flak staff work endlessly filing last minute motions for a stay of execution. All along Drumm has insisted on his innocence. Lethal injection is days away. Time is running out. Flak has his work cut out for him!

In a town with a racist police force, and a haphazard district attorney, the gears went in motion years ago, and next to nothing would stop them now. The Execution of Donte Drumm hangs in the balance. Can Flak, Schroeder, and Boyette give the evidence needed to save an innocent man from death?

This emotional novel is fast paced. Lots happening. There are so many moving pieces. Grisham keeps everything in order. Aligned. There is no getting lost in the narrative. The picture painted is clean, clear, concise. The injustice is apparent, blatant, and infuriating. I found my anxiety levels rise through the roof as I read chapter after chapter.

Like all the good Grisham novels, there are unexpected ups, and downs, and constant surprises. Most of the Legal Thriller takes place outside of the courtroom (I do long for a good trial novel, I must say), but the briefs, and filings, and judges, and lawyers . . . they're in there!

A fantastic read. An impacting story. A relevant piece even now, some seven years after it's publication!

Phillip Tomasso
Author of The Severed Empire Series,
and The Vaccination Trilogy

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