On the right side of the law. Sort of.
Sebastian Rudd is not your typical street lawyer. He works out of a customized bulletproof van, complete with Wi-Fi, a bar, a small fridge, fine leather chairs, a hidden gun compartment, and a heavily armed driver. He has no firm, no partners, no associates, and only one employee, his driver, who’s also his bodyguard, law clerk, confidant, and golf caddy. He lives alone in a small but extremely safe penthouse apartment, and his primary piece of furniture is a vintage pool table. He drinks small-batch bourbon and carries a gun. Sebastian defends people other lawyers won’t go near: a drug-addled, tattooed kid rumored to be in a satanic cult, who is accused of molesting and murdering two little girls; a vicious crime lord on death row; a homeowner arrested for shooting at a SWAT team that mistakenly invaded his house. Why these clients? Because he believes everyone is entitled to a fair trial, even if he, Sebastian, has to cheat to secure one. He hates injustice, doesn’t like insurance companies, banks, or big corporations; he distrusts all levels of government and laughs at the justice system’s notions of ethical behavior. Sebastian Rudd is one of John Grisham’s most colorful, outrageous, and vividly drawn characters yet. Gritty, witty, and impossible to put down, Rogue Lawyer showcases the master of the legal thriller at his very best.
Audiobook, 11 pages
Published October 20th 2015 by Random House Audio
Four and a half stars: A page turner with an unforgettable main character who shows you the gray side of the law and the ugliness of the judicial system. It will astound and shock you.
Sebastian Rudd is not a high priced power lawyer with a fancy car, expensive office and prestigious clients. Instead his office is a customized bullet proof van. His firm consists of himself and his one employee, Partner, who is a bodyguard, law clerk, caddy, friend and confidant. Sebastian's clients aren't the typical high dollar clientele. Instead they are the ones that other lawyers won't go near. He takes on the people who he feels are getting the short of the end stick. Why does he take the tough cases? Rudd does it because he hates injustice, especially when it involves the government and law enforcement behaving badly. Single handedly, Rudd sets out to do the impossible: win against impossible odds. The question is will he be able to survive?
What I Liked:
- Wow! Just what I needed. A solid, page turner that kept me riveted from the get go. Grisham was a go to author for me, and for whatever reason, I haven't read one of his books in a long while. Once I picked up the Rogue Lawyer, I quickly remembered why I love Grisham. He is an excellent story teller, and he always presents stories that make you look at things in a whole different light. This is a book that exposes corruption and all shades of gray when it comes to the law and those who deal out justice. If you are wanting an excellent legal thriller with unconventional characters and a fascinating story, look no further.
- I loved that this book kept me on my toes. I was constantly flip flopping on how I felt about the characters and the cases. Especially when it comes to the main character, Sebastian Rudd. Rudd is not your typical lawyer, and I loved that about him. Sometimes, I was totally in his corner as he fought against injustice, and then other times, I was not such a fan as he had to resort to some shady dealings. What I liked was that I was always changing my opinion, and I loved that Rudd had so many flaws. He is far from a golden boy, but he is totally likable.
- I liked that this book covers six different cases. The cases are completely different. Some, I wanted Rudd to win, while others I wasn't so sure about it. I also appreciated that none of the cases were simple and straightforward. Each one exposes flaws in the judicial system that will have you rethinking what you think you know about the law.
- I liked that you get a glimpse into Sebastian's personal life, which is just as complicated as his career. He has the ex wife from hell, and all kinds of issues. It was entertaining to see him try and balance it all.
- The ending tied of most of the major story lines off, but there were some nagging questions. I was relieved when I found out this was the first in a series. I can't wait for more of Sebastian Rudd.
- I listened to the audiobook version narrated by Mark Deakins. This was the first time I listened to Deakins, and I can tell you it won't be my last. Mr. Deakins did an excellent job with the narration. Definitely get the audiobook if you can.
And The Not So Much:
- At first, the book felt a bit disjointed. It begins with one case, and then spans out to several others. Initially, the different cases don't seem to connect, but then slowly they begin to interweave. It took some time for it to all come together, and once it did, it all made sense. It is a little rough at first, but be patient.
- The ending felt a abrupt. I felt like there was so much more story to tell. It wasn't a cliffhanger, but there were a lot of story threads that I wanted to see followed up on. I am excited to know there will be another book.
- I wish that the story didn't feel so disconnected. It almost felt like it was an attempt to string together several short stories or novellas. It didn't feel polished and cohesive. Yes, it all came together, for the most part and made sense at the end, but it bothered me that it didn't all fit neatly.
The Rogue Lawyer was an exciting, riveting read that kept me entertained throughout. This book has plenty of action and suspense, and I liked that it challenged me to look at justice in a new light. The cases presented are tough, and sometimes several shades of gray are exposed. It has been a long time since I read a Grisham book, but I can assure you, I am ready for more. If you want a good legal thriller with lots of twists and turns, give this one a go.
I borrowed a copy of this book from the library. All opinions are my own, and I was not compensated for this review.