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The Associate [Hardcover]

John Grisham
2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
List Price: CDN$ 33.00
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Book Description

Jan. 27 2009
If you thought Mitch McDeere was in trouble in The Firm, wait
until you meet Kyle McAvoy, The Associate

Kyle McAvoy grew up in his father’s small-town law office in York, Pennsylvania. He excelled in college, was elected editor-in-chief of The Yale Law Journal, and his future has limitless potential.

But Kyle has a secret, a dark one, an episode from college that he has tried to forget. The secret, though, falls into the hands of the wrong people, and Kyle is forced to take a job he doesn’t want—even though it’s a job most law students can only dream about.

Three months after leaving Yale, Kyle becomes an associate at the largest law firm in the world, where, in addition to practicing law, he is expected to lie, steal, and take part in a scheme that could send him to prison, if not get him killed.

With an unforgettable cast of characters and villains—from Baxter Tate, a drug-addled trust fund kid and possible rapist, to Dale, a pretty but seemingly quiet former math teacher who shares Kyle’s “cubicle” at the law firm, to two of the most powerful and fiercely competitive defense contractors in the country—and featuring all the twists and turns that have made John Grisham the most popular storyteller in the world, The Associate is vintage Grisham.

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Review

GRISHAM HAS A FIELD DAY…The Associate grabs the reader quickly and becomes impossible to put down.” —Janet Maslin, The New York Times

“Grisham’s confident style hasn’t changed, and THERE’S SUSPENSE APLENTY.” —People

“Grisham makes it easy for us to keep flipping the pages…A DEVASTATING PORTRAIT OF THE BIG-TIME, BIG-BUCKS LEGAL WORLD.” —Patrick Anderson, The Washington Post

“Throughout, Grisham unwinds the spool of his narrative at a MASTERFUL, page-turning pace that pulls readers in and keeps them wanting more…The Associate is an absorbing thriller that's A FITTING FOLLOW-UP TO THE FIRM.” —The Boston Globe

COMPULSIVELY READABLE…You're peering into a secret world of power and money. What more could you or any red-blooded American ask for?” —Time magazine

A PAGE-TURNER…Kyle McAvoy recalls Mitch McDeere from Grisham's breakout novel The Firm. He's young, idealistic, handsome, a little too cocky for his own good, but a brilliant lawyer who gets pulled in over his head and given an education in how the world really works.” —The Los Angeles Times

About the Author

JOHN GRISHAM has written twenty previous novels and one work of nonfiction, The Innocent Man, published in 2006. He lives in Virginia and Mississippi.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Compares Poorly to The Firm Jan. 31 2009
By Donald Mitchell #1 HALL OF FAME TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover
The Associate is further evidence that John Grisham's best legal thriller writing was in his early days. From the concept for the plot to the character development to the ending, this novel shouldn't get past the defense's request for summary judgment to dismiss the book without offering a defense of the request.

If you haven't already read The Firm, The Associate would almost come up to average level. I'm sure you have read The Firm (probably one reason why you picked up The Associate), and in every aspect of The Associate you'll wish you were reading The Firm.

Don't judge the book by its first 57 pages. Those pages are vivid, interesting, compelling, and will get your heart pumping. After that, it's all downhill . . . a long way down.

So what's it all about?

Kyle McAvoy is a third-year student at Yale Law School in New Haven, Connecticut where he's the star of the show as editor-in-chief of the Yale Law Review. Having grown up in Erie, Pennsylvania where his father runs a "serve-the-people" practice rather than a "take-the-peoples'-money" practice, McAvoy is planning to take a job as a poverty lawyer for 2-3 years.

Fate intervenes while McAvoy is coaching a youth league basketball game. The FBI wants to talk to McAvoy. Before the night is over, a series of events begin to unfold that make McAvoy a pawn in a game so big he cannot even imagine who the players might be. It's all tied up with a moment he would rather forget, even though he doesn't remember much about the moment through the mists of time and drunkenness.

As a result, McAvoy joins one of the nation's largest and highest paid firms, Scully & Pershing, as a litigation associate.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Like a good sexual buildup, but fails at orgasm.. Sept. 10 2012
By F. Khan
Format:Paperback
Seriously, I was not expecting such an unresolved ending by Grisham. My first thought was there must be a sequel. Or that Grisham was testing alternative styles of ending and this is his first such project. Needless to say, if this was a first book by Grisham it would have been an epic fail. The triumph of good over evil is a staple ending of all crime and legal thrillers and is what drives the reader's 8-hour journey through the writer's created world. Unfortunately, The Associate is a noir which leaves the protagonist without hope, and the reader without closure.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Only half a book? May 22 2012
Format:Paperback
I agree with just about everything that has been written here ... first off the plot and the whole premise of the blackmail was a stretch to put it mildly. Even after I decided to push through and 'forgive' that I found myself questioning every plot twist with "yeah but why doesn't he just go get help" or something similar. Worst of all though was the lack of reward for pushing through to the end - it honestly feels as one reviewer already wrote, as if J.G. was contracted for x number of pages and just stopped once he got there. So many plot lines left mid stream .... avoid.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Latest Grisham Lawyer thriller March 16 2009
Format:Hardcover
This is not Grisham's best.. it's still very good but doesn't have the "can't set it down" quality that some of his have. Still a very good read.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Easy to put it down! April 9 2009
Format:Hardcover
Very dissapointed. Nothing like John's earlier titles. I am half wondering if its the same author. The plot is interesting in which a bunch of bad guys are asking Kyle to spy information from a legal firm. The bad guys are supposedly hi-tech, very well organised and extremely smart - makes you wonder why they would want an Associate to spy for them, then?! Kyle is forced to spy based on some flimsy video, which I did not think it was very damaging to Kyle. I have ready 75% of the book and am NOT looking forward to finishing the remaining 25%.

I am first going to read reviews before I buy any of John's next book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not Grisham's best March 29 2011
By Toni Osborne TOP 100 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
Grisham's best known trademark is his ability to write mesmerizing legal thrillers. With a political overtone to his one, he has brought us another story that is absorbing enough to keep readers attention. If you liked "The Pelican Brief" and "The Firm", you may want to read this one.

The hero is Kyle McAvoy, onetime editor of the Yale Law Journal, whose post-graduation plans were to work as a legal-aid representing illegal migrant workers. His dream is chattered when he is visited by Bennie Wright, a sinister fellow who has discovered a skeleton in Kyle's closet: a video of Kyle's fraternity brothers, gang raping a girl in his apartment while he watched on. Bennie threatens to make it public and destroy Kyle's legal career if he doesn't accept a job at the prestigious law firm of Scully& Pershing. He needs Kyle inside the firm to obtain confidential information and documents regarding a law suit against two defense industries.

We have two main themes playing throughout the novel that criss-cross each other, first the novel highlights the extreme pressure of being an associate in a powerful firm where it is expected two work limitless billable hours in order to artificially inflate their customers bill. The other is Kyle's reluctant role as Bennie's in house spy.

The author usually writes intricate plots that have his readers flipping page after page. This novel started in the same manner but for some reason mid-way, the storyline fizzled and the pacing began to bog down. Although not unique, Kyle's character is interesting and rather smart. I particularly liked his clever plan to outwit Bennie; it provided some unpredictability and helped maintain my attention. As for the supporting characters, most were rather dull and some I would even consider a distraction to the main plot. I felt Grisham ran out steam towards the end, this has left me with a so so memory of the novel.
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