Book Review: The Associate by John Grisham


I am, obviously, behind the times.  This is the first John Grisham book I’ve ever read.  The Firm, his first book, was published in 1991 and was a hit back then so I’m a little late to the game. 

I have to say that I started reading this with some fervor and was rather enthralled until about the last quarter of the book.  Honestly, I could see most of the story being rather believable up until that point.  I’d give the first three quarters of the book four stars, and the last quarter two stars so we’re giving this sucker a mid-grade so-so rating.  As I’d say… ‘meh.’  Sadly I don’t have a whole lot to say for the book other than that, mostly because if you want to read it I don’t want to give anything away. 

I will say that I was talking to someone I work with about the book and he said ‘oh you should have started with The Firm’ so I take that to mean that there are better Grisham books out there. 

Also, I’ve been told numerous times that I’d make a good lawyer.  Reading this book made me happy I never decided to pursue that path.  I’m sure that not all firms are handled the way that they’re portrayed in the book but considering my luck I’m sure I would have ended up in one just like that. 

Here’s the overview from Barnes & Noble:  

If you thought Mitch McDeere was in trouble in The Firm, wait until you meet Kyle McAvoy, The Associate

Kyle McAvoy grew up in his father’s small-town law office in York, Pennsylvania. He excelled in college, was elected editor-in-chief of The Yale Law Journal, and his future has limitless potential.

But Kyle has a secret, a dark one, an episode from college that he has tried to forget. The secret, though, falls into the hands of the wrong people, and Kyle is forced to take a job he doesn’t want—even though it’s a job most law students can only dream about.

Three months after leaving Yale, Kyle becomes an associate at the largest law firm in the world, where, in addition to practicing law, he is expected to lie, steal, and take part in a scheme that could send him to prison, if not get him killed.

With an unforgettable cast of characters and villains—from Baxter Tate, a drug-addled trust fund kid and possible rapist, to Dale, a pretty but seemingly quiet former math teacher who shares Kyle’s “cubicle” at the law firm, to two of the most powerful and fiercely competitive defense contractors in the country—and featuring all the twists and turns that have made John Grisham the most popular storyteller in the world, The Associate is vintage Grisham.