A book review of ‘The Rainmaker’ by John Grisham
I thought I was getting used to John Grisham having read most of his novels, until I picked this one up.
The novel has an almost stagnant start, where everything seems to go wrong, all at once, to Rudy Baylor – a final year law student. He is broke and in debt, has just lost his girlfriend to a classmate, and then gets dropped by the law-firm who was intending to employ him, before working a day for them.
For one of his final year classes, Rudy has to reluctantly volunteer to give free legal advice for the elderly, and unexpectedly lands himself a ground-breaking case; Donny-Rae Black is a terminal cancer patient who is on his deathbed after having been refused treatment from his medical insurance two years previously.
As Rudy digs, he begins to uncover a mountain of dirty-dealing and bad-faith towards his client by the devious insurance company.
However, he finds himself unemployed, inexperienced, and up against one of the biggest and most intimidating defence firms in the county.
This is one of the few Grisham novels written in the first person, and it really draws you into the character’s hopes, disappointments, risks and frustrations and courage, and I certainly fought hard to put it down.
In 1997 the book was made into a movie starring Matt Damon, Danny DeVito and Claire Danes. See below: