Book Review | A Time to Kill by John Grisham

Hi friends! Boy did I read a chonker of a book. My sister-out-law has been telling me for years to read Grisham. I’ve read The Rainmaker and really enjoyed it, so I finally decided to pick up his debut – A Time to Kill.

A time to killA Time to Kill by John Grisham
5 out of 5
Dates read: 20 July 2022 to 1 August 2022
Length: 738 pages
First published in 1989 by Century
Recommended by: My sister-out-law 🙂 
Available to order from AmazonWaterstonesBookdepository

Trigger warnings: Graphic SA of a child, graphic murder scene, racism, violence

Blurb: When a ten-year-old black girl is brutally raped by two white men, her father takes justice into his own hands and guns down the attackers in broad daylight.

There are those in Clanton, Mississippi who sympathise with Carl-Lee Hailey’s act of vengeance, but for every person who calls for his acquittal, there are those who want to see him pay.

As tension mount, Hailey hires young lawyer Jake Brigance to defend him.

This is the case that could make Jake’s career.

Or it could get him killed.

My thoughts: Whoa, what a book! Gut-wrenching and incredibly powerful from start to finish. No lie, I was glued to it. I haven’t been reading even close to how I used to be reading, so it took me a little while to get through this thickk-boi but it was a very rewarding journey!

I really enjoyed the deep dives into the courtroom life, one of my favourite things about legal thrillers. Learning about what goes on behind the closed doors, the politics within the justice system, it’s just so interesting to me!

What I didn’t enjoy as much was some of the language, which I suppose can be blamed on “ohh that’s just how it was back in those days” or “yeah well that’s Deep South for you“. To be fair it did give me some perception of the double standards and blatant racism that were an everyday occurrence back then, but it sure didn’t make it any easier to stomach when reading.

The narrative is shocking, incredibly infuriating and gripping. Grisham sure writes a lot of words and to his credit, the words say a lot. It’s not just boring waffling. A Time to Kill starts with a very graphic scene that leads into a multi levelled story of revenge, justice and integrity.

Would I recommend it? Absolutely, but remember you will need a strong stomach to digest the whole thing.

Kat x



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