Best John Grisham Books

Best John Grisham Books

John Grisham is a highly successful, best selling author of (mostly) legal thrillers. He draws on his professional life as an attorney, politician and activist. Best John Grisham books lists abound and vary wildly with personalities. This Best John Grisham Books list by WhyToRead is our list of  our favorites.

Lawyers turned rogue, crazy families, small towns, big towns and even a baseball rookie – these books have it all.

1. Sycamore Row (The Jake Brigance)

best John Grisham booksbest John Grisham books
For those who enjoyed Grisham’s A Time to Kill, Sycamore Row is sort of a loose sequel that brings back many of the characters from the earlier novel. The book started off with a bang: a wealthy man had committed suicide, leaving behind a hand written will that cuts out his family from his estate and makes his maid the beneficiary. With unexpected twists and dysfunctional characters that are typical of a Grisham legal thriller, this is a page-turner you don’t want to start reading if there are a lot of important things still unchecked on your to-do list.

2. Gray Mountain

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Samantha Kofer had a career at a prestigious Wall Street law firm, until she became part of the downsizing effort due to the recession. Her new job then takes her to a small coal mining town where people will kill to cover up secrets.  They are not at all keen on newbie Samantha being in town. Some Grisham readers consider Gray Mountain one of his weakest works, and Samantha among the least sympathetic protagonists.  We,  with many others rank it as a favorite. Either way, you are still in for an entertaining read that will have you turning pages. Whether you find the conclusion satisfactory is another matter.

3. The Racketeer

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Meet Malcolm Bannister, a lawyer jailed for a crime he didn’t commit and he is out for revenge. The Racketeer is a novel that requires the reader to set aside what they deem to be realistic for the sake of being immersed in a crafty story. Stop questioning the possibility of some of the main character’s actions and the overall plot, curl up and enjoy a fast and thrilling read.

4. Rogue Lawyer

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A lawyer who plays by his own rules, Sebastian Rudd is known for defending clients other attorneys would not take on.  He  even occasionally resorts to shady tactics to get what he wants. For those who enjoy a more character-centric legal drama, Rogue Lawyer is a great choice as far as Grisham’s books go. Rather than focusing on one court case, the plot revolves around Rudd as he works on case after case,  while going through a custody battle with his ex-wife. Shenanigans and antics abound in this one.

5. The Litigators

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Instead of suspenseful legal battles, The Litigators is about the lives of two less upstanding lawyers – Oscar Finley and Waly Figg, partners at their own tiny firm, Finley & Figg. Always looking to make the most out of each clients and situation, they are joined by the disillusioned David Zinc.   After a series of legal misadventures, the three ended up in a big courtroom battle against some formidable opponents. Overall, it is a fun-filled Grisham novel, peppered with complex characters.

6. Calico Joe

best John Grisham booksbest John Grisham books
Last but not least in our Best John Grisham Books list is his first baseball novel.  Centered on rise of a promising rookie player, Joe “Calico Joe” Castle, whose career was ended by a near fatal pitch thrown by a big leaguer, Warren Tracey. The novel is more than just a story about one of America’s favorite sport, but also of human drama. Told through the eyes of Warren’s 11 year-old son, the plot unfolds with how the events of a game had influenced the lives of those involved. The book is a departure from the legal thrillers Grisham is often associated with, but the story is just as engaging.

Christmas 2015 Best Sellers

Christmas 2015 Best Sellers

The 2015 Best Sellers from Amazon over Christmas were a mixed bag of books. At WhyToRead we wonder how many were for gifts, and how many were self-gifts. We certainly indulged in some self-gifting of books from our to-read list (to appear on a list in due course).

So, if you didnt get these or havent read these 2015 Best Sellers, then hopefully you have some Christmas money left over to indulge. Curl up by a warm fire and see what popular choice has chosen for you to read.  (Hint, 4 are mystery/thrillers).

Top 5 Christmas 2015 Best Sellers

1. The Girl With No Past: A gripping psychological thriller – Kathryn Croft

2015 Best Seller

Leah Mills was a fugitive on the run from something in her past, until she met Julian and they both built a normal life together. Years later, Leah’s past return to haunt her; someone who knew her secret was threatening to destroy everything she had. Base in London, The Girl with No Past is a psychological thriller that promises enough plot twists to keep you on the edge of your seat. Croft masterfully tells the story by unraveling the events of 14 years earlier, yet keeping the readers in the dark on what actually happened…until the end.

2. The Good Neighbor – AJ Banner

2015 Best Seller

Sarah settled into a peaceful neighborhood with her beloved new husband. Everything seemed perfect, until tragedy led her to discover a shocking secret that forced her to question everything she knew about the world around her – neighbors, friends and ever her marriage. The Good Neighbour builds on the premise of ‘all is not as it seems’, and true enough, you may just find yourself lost in the mystery and read this book into the night. Besides the multi-layered suspense-filled plot, Banner also constructed solid believable characters with redeeming qualities that readers can relate to and sympathize with.

3.The Silent Girls – Eric Rickstad

2015 Best Seller

A series of mysterious disappearances of teenage girls in a rural Vermont town brought private investigator, Frank Rath face-to-face with a case that brought back demons from his days as a homicide detective. Rickstad’s tale is an intense and complex psychological thriller, with some horror and intriguing twists thrown in for good measure. Dark in premise, vividly descriptive and filled with fascinating characters, The Silent Girls will have readers enjoying the suspenseful build-up while also craving the resolve.

4. The Nightingale – Kristin Hannah

2015 Best Seller

Set in occupied France, during World War II, The Nightingale is a story of how sisters Isabelle and Viann braved unimaginable circumstance in a tumultuous period in history. For readers who enjoy wartime stories, this novel offers a fresh perspective of what women do in dangerous times, not just as survivors, but also as rescuers when the men are away. Beautifully descriptive, with well-rounded and strong female characters that readers can root for, this is a page-turner begging to be adapted into a movie.

5. The Girl on the Train – Paula Hawkins

2015 Best Seller

Rachel was a divorced alcoholic who indulged in constructing a fairy tale love life for a couple she observed from a train window. Little did she expect that she would be entangled in a murder investigation due to what she saw on her daily commute. The Girl on the Train is a dark and depressing thriller, told from the viewpoints of three women, each with something to hide. The characters are self-serving, deceitful and unsympathetic, but one can’t help being engrossed in their dirty little secrets. Nevertheless, there are enough intrigues to make a reader want to devour the book in one sitting and get to the bottom of the mystery.

Halloween Scary Books List: 6 Most Frightening Novels Ever

Halloween Scary Books List: 6 Most Frightening Novels Ever

Do you want a book to scare the hell out of you? Are you looking for really scary books to creep you out?

These 6 novels will do just that. These are the best books for Halloween to scare you and your friends.

Halloween Scary Books List: 6 Most Frightening Novels Of All Time

1. House of Leaves – Mark Z. Danielewski

Scary Books

Johnny Truant, a tattoo parlor employee, has come into possession of a trunk full of bizarre scraps of paper once owned by an old blind man, Zampano who is now dead. The papers comprise of an exploration of a cult film called “The Navidson Record” and its sub-films, documentaries about an ever-expanding house that’s bigger on the inside than it is on the outside and which consumes the lives of anyone who enters its dark hallways or watches the tapes.

2. The Shining – Stephen King

Scary Books

The Shining remains a visceral, gripping read that showcases Stephen King’s powers to hypnotize and terrify readers.

3. The Haunting of Hill House – Shirley Jackson

Scary Books

The Haunting of Hill House remains one of the most important horror novels of all time and certainly one of the most singular haunted house tales ever written. It is certainly worth mentioning that at no time do we or the characters actually see any sort of visible ghostly manifestation; the phenomena are limited to cold spots, spectral banging on the walls and doors, messages written on walls, and torn, blood-spewed clothing in one room.

4. The Little Stranger – Sarah Waters

Scary Books

This is a haunting and frightening story about how one’s childhood desires and expectations never truly diminish, in fact if left unchecked, they can grow to such a horrifying proportion that they take on a life and soul of their own.

5. Hell House – Richard Matheson

Scary Books

Hell House” has enough twists and turns to satisfy, and enough really scary, disgusting stuff to possibly haunt your dreams.

6. The Road – Cormac McCarthy

Scary Books

Set in the post-apocalyptic hell of an unending nuclear winter, Cormac McCarthy writes about a nameless man and his young son, wandering through a world gone crazy; bleak, cold, dark, where the snow falls down gray; moving south toward the coast, looking somewhere, anywhere, for life and warmth.