The Client

26 Jun
    “The Client” released in 1993, is the fourth novel from John Grisham in the Legal-thriller section. Playing behind the trailer park in the woods of Memphis, eleven-year old Mark Sway and his 8-year old younger brother Ricky, watch a Lincoln, park in the clearing in the woods. Out comes a man with a garden hose who pushes one end of it into the exhaust and the other end into a window and closes it. After watching several such suicide attempts (killing by Carbon Monoxide poisoning) on TV, Mark realizes what is happening and crawls to pull the hose out of the exhaust pipe. After the third attempt of putting back the hose, the man catches Mark crawling across the grass and drags him into the car. 
    Just moments before the death, the man reveals himself as Jerome Clifford, lawyer of infamous mobster, Barry ‘The Blade’ Muldanno, who is accused of murdering an U.S Senator Boyd Boyette. He tells Mark that he has been hiding a terrible secret which could solve the murder mystery and indict Barry. Since Barry would kill him anyway, Clifford wants to end his life in his own terms. Barry had previously told Clifford that he buried the body in the concrete under the boat in Cliffordโ€™s garage, when he was on a skiing holiday in Colorado. All this time, Mark watched Clifford drinking and he escapes the moment he dozes off with the help of Ricky. When Clifford wakes up and finds that Mark is missing, he gives up and puts a bullet to his own head. Ricky, on watching the suicide goes into shock and ultimately coma. Mark informs the police about the incident who in turn find proof of Mark being inside the car. This raises doubts in the mind of police that Clifford might have revealed information about the case to Mark.
    Mark is thrown into dilemma that if he ever reveals the information to police/FBI, then Barry’s henchmen would kill his entire family. But if he decides to hide the information, he has to face the wrath of the publicity-seeking public prosecutor from New Orleans Roy Foltrigg, who might even jail him for contempt. A chance incident leads Mark into the office of advocate Reggie Love – an old lady with a 5-year old experience in handling law. Mark is placed under a juvenile-home from where he escapes. Barry’s henchmen burn Mark’s trailer and warn him of dire consequences. Mark decides to search for the body along with Reggie, to confirm if the story is true. The rest of the plot is about Mark finding out the truth in Clifford’s dying words and the consequence he has to face behind the truth/lie or whether Barry’s henchmen get to Mark before he can find out the truth.
    The story as such is decent but the characters in the book are forgettable. A smooth-talking 11-year old is hard to believe. A brother who goes into coma in the first part, a mother who is weak, two antagonists in Barry and Roy who do nothing to provide the thrills are big let downs. A not so intriguing plot is also on the downside. A 5/10 for this one.

4 Responses to “The Client”

  1. Nithin Uliyar June 27, 2012 at 6:15 am #

    Grisham strikes back ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. prasanna's blog June 27, 2012 at 6:34 am #

    He sure does.. This book just one of the average ones from Grisham… ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Nithin Uliyar June 27, 2012 at 3:37 pm #

    he he.. i was talking w.r.t u… not Grisham ๐Ÿ˜›

  4. prasanna's blog June 28, 2012 at 4:04 am #

    ah! haage… then it is time to shift base. quite a few others are pending.. ๐Ÿ˜›

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