John Grisham enters the lucrative Young Adult (YA) market with this new book Theodore Boone: Young Laywer. How does he fare? Well, read on to find out 🙂
Btw, I have seen this book also called as Theodore Boone: Kid Lawyer. At first, I was confused thinking they were different books, but no they are the same books probably published under different names for different types of markets. I think kid is a predominantly American term, no?
In the small city of Strattenburg, there are many lawyers, and though he’s only thirteen years old, Theo Boone thinks he’s one of them. Theo knows every judge, policeman, court clerk — and a lot about the law. He dreams of being a great trial lawyer, of a life in the courtroom.
But Theo finds himself in court much sooner than expected. Because he knows so much — maybe too much — he is suddenly dragged into the middle of a sensational murder trial. A cold-blooded killer is about to go free, and only Theo knows the truth.
The stakes are high, but Theo won’t stop until justice is served.
~ Synopsis From the Back of the Book
My Thoughts on the Book
John Grisham is a good writer. His books almost always work for me. And this is no exception. I enjoyed this book, albeit in a rather mild way.
However, there are two big problems with this book:
- This is a book that parents would recommend to children to read. But I am not very sure that kids by itself will find it interesting. Kids younger than 10 will not be able to fully understand the legal aspects of the book. Kids older than 10 who grew up on Harry Potteresque style of exciting YA fiction might find this book rather tame in comparison.
So, yes, I have a feeling that Grisham has not correctly identified the consumers who are going to be reading this book. In all probability, adults like me who yearn for a more innocent time in our lives will end up reading this book.
- The other major problem is the crappy ending. Seriously, this was one book where I did not even realize that the story had ended. At the end, I turned the page expecting the next chapter only to be confronted by a blank page. That is literally when I realized that the book was over. The ending was that abrupt. I understand the need for cliff-hanger endings in series books, but by any standards this was ridiculous.
Don’t go into this book with high expectations. It’s not a bad book, I have to confess I quite liked the small-town atmosphere, the innocence and basic decency of the characters, and Grisham’s writing style. However, it comes nowhere close to some of the really good YA fiction that is available these days.