Friday, April 9, 2010

John Grisham Novels Based on Things that "Really, Really Happened"?

Now, I don't think Ive read everything that John Grisham's written, but I have read a fair amount. His books make for an entertaining airplane read, as evidenced by the fact that my husband refers to all of them as The Business Traveler.

"What are you reading, honey?"
"John Grisham's The Business Traveler. I picked it up at O'Hare."

But. As a lawyer and a sentient human being, I have to wonder about a quote Grisham gave to the Yale Daily News, in which he says that his novels "go back to something that really, really happened." What I presume he means is that they have as their seed a nugget of something that could conceivably happen. To wit: In The Firm, our hero eventually brings down the bad guys by giving the feds evidence that the partners have been padding their bills, which amounted to mail fraud. This was clever and believable. Less believable were the mounting body count, firm-arranged liasion with a prostitute on a Caribbean island, and the $10 million or so dollars the young attorney escapes with at the end.

Is this a bad thing? Of course not. Trust me, a book about what really happens in the practice of law would be titled The Insomniac's Companion.