The Litigators: A Novel by John Grisham

The LitigatorsReviewed by Allen Hott

No doubt this guy can write. If he cannot hold your interest with his descriptions, legal terminology, great characters, and tremendous story lines I am afraid you are not truly a reader.

As usual Grisham has written about lawyers, their trials and tribulations. In this case it begins with an attorney quitting his job with a high powered, multi-lawyered law firm. Exactly how he quits his job and how he leaves is one of the best introductions to a novel. The reason he left was because of the hours and pressure. Making good money but working himself to death and ignoring his wife and hoped for family.

That attorney, David Zinc, managed to spot a billboard sign for a law firm named Finley & Figg. Owned by Oscar Finley and Wally Figg, the firm basically was an ambulance chasing small time firm with basically no staff, no major clients, and no foreseeable improvement in business in the future. David quickly works his way in and becomes a third man to the team of Oscar and Wally. He has a pretty good sized nest egg saved up and convinces his wife that he just wants to give a shot to this idea of working and perhaps becoming a partner in a smaller law firm. He is fed up with the big firms and their wearing out junior staff partners.

Almost by accident Wally hears of a supposedly faulty drug on the market that is supposed to treat high cholesterol. One of Wally’s clients had just died from a heart attack and it was mentioned to Wally that Krayoxx was the drug he had been taking. Being an ambulance chasing small time attorney Wally quickly jumped at the idea of suing a major drug manufacturer for millions of dollars.

Wally begins to build a case by scrounging the area for deaths recently by heart attack and comes up with eight cases where the decedent had been using Krayoxx. He works hard to convince Oscar and David that this could be their dream suit. Strangely enough there are several other cases around the country that have surfaced to lend substance to his argument. And then he is contacted by one of the largest mass tort lawyers in the country to join with others in putting together the suits.

While all of this is going on Grisham keeps the reader busy with side plots involving Oscar and his wife; David’s wife who has become pregnant; Wally’s ventures and other situations involving clients or their one staff member!

But the real crux of the story is when Varrick Laboratories, maker of Krayoxx, decides to fight. Not only do they decide to fight but they zero in on the cases that Finley & Figg have brought to the front.

The court room battle between David (in truth) and Goliath (Varrick’s defense attorney) is a tremendous sub-climax to this really great book. All of Grisham’s great story telling just seems to keep building and building to a fantastic ending. And it does just that!

Disclosure in Accordance with FTC Guidelines 16 CFR Part 255

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