An eleven-year-old has discovered a secret that not even an adult should know. A US State Senator is dead, and Mark Sway is the only one who knows where the body is hidden. The FBI want him to tell them where it is, at whatever cost to Mark and his family. The killer wants him silenced forever. Reggie Love has been practising law for less than five years. Only she can save Mark from these twin threats. Together they must take on the might of the State and the wiles of a cold-blooded killer.
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(178mm x 110mm x 32mm)
Arrow Books Ltd
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US Kirkus Review »
Grisham's latest opens with a neat hook into the reader's jaw - and the tension never wavers - as the author strives for a knockout suspenser with echoes of Mark Twain and Robert Louis Stevenson - or at least the reader can't help weighing what he's reading against the darker plots that enmesh Huck Finn and Jim Hawkins. Instead of pirates, though, 11-year-old Mark Sway is thrown among lawyers and murderers. Mark, a great follower of L.A. Law, becomes "the client" after he witnesses the suicide of a drunken Mafia lawyer. Before the lawyer dies, he tries to take Mark with him, holding the boy prisoner while the Cadillac they sit in fills with carbon dioxide. As he's fading, the lawyer reveals to Mark the whereabouts of the body of a Louisiana senator. The senator was murdered by Mafia thug Barry "the Blade" Muldanno, then buried under concrete in the lawyer's garage. Mark escapes death but now holds a secret so deadly that Barry the Blade is ready to waste him. He's also wanted by the feds because Barry's going on trial for the senator's murder - but there's no body, and so the feds have a weak case. Mark retains 52-year-old Reggie Love, an abused divorcee, to help him keep shut about the body's whereabouts. If it's known that he knows - and the hoods and feds suspect him mightily - he and his family will never have a safe moment again. The story is set in Memphis, then moves to New Orleans, but both backgrounds are sketchy. The strongest scene features three mildly funny goons in the middle of the night trying to...well, enough. Mark is too smart by half, rather than wise like Huck; dialogue slips into exposition; and Grisham goes for the tear ducts at rule's end, but presses too hard. None of this matters. In the movie, the obligatory face-out between Barry the Blade and Mark will take place, bet on it, though Grisham avoids the confrontation. (Kirkus Reviews)
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Author Biography - John Grisham
John Grisham is the author of twenty-two novels, one work of non-fiction, a collection of short stories, and a novel for young readers. He is on the Board of Directors for the Innocence Project in New York and is the Chairman on the Board of Directors for the Mississippi Innocence Project at the Mississippi School of Law. He lives in Virginia and Mississippi. His website is www.johngrisham.co.uk.