1997, Books, Fiction

The Partner (1997) by John Grisham

I only know Grisham from the old days when his novels were constantly turned into “event movies” – or the closest thing we had to those back
in the ’90s. I watched many of them, though not every one, and, at least as a teenager, thoroughly enjoyed a couple of them, particularly A Time to Kill and The Pelican Brief.

Light spoilers ahead. You have been warned.

Maybe films make Grisham’s novels come alive better or maybe my tastes have changed (they absolutely have) or maybe this is just lesser Grisham, but this is pretty blah. Grisham’s prose is admirably economical but for
some reason that doesn’t help me with this mystery.

Rather, I found the plot awfully formulaic, as if Grisham was ticking off various things along the way, to make sure we completely sympathize with Patrick – as the novel is designed to do from the start – and to make sure all the evildoers are punished. This is some stupid noble crime stuff. (Crimes
aren’t crimes if Justice is served!) Patrick isn’t very likable and it’s hard to know why he has friends and I really don’t know why this elaborate crime to redress another crime is somehow okay. Also, I have no idea why Patrick is so damn rich to begin with.

It must be nice to a rich lawyer who can ripoff his partners for the greater good and move to Brazil for a few years with no need to work. Kind of thought he deserved those electric shocks just a little…(That’s a joke!)


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