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The King of Torts Mass Market Paperback – Dec 16 2003


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Dell; 1 edition (Dec 16 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0440241537
  • ISBN-13: 978-0440241539
  • Product Dimensions: 3 x 10.8 x 17.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 227 g
  • Average Customer Review: 2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (490 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #215,547 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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2.9 out of 5 stars
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Most helpful customer reviews

Format: Hardcover
3 Stars, I rated it. Why, because in spite of it all, I enjoyed the process of reading the book. It's the book as a whole that I hated.
I was travelling with a colleague on a business trip when she was reading this, and she told me not to bother. Not to be daunted, I picked it up.
She was right. I wanted to shoot myself at the end of the book. But that's the point - at the END of the book.
The book is gripping... very gripping. The first few pages fail to grab, but eventually you're hooked.
I found myself getting progressively euphoric, as Carter made his millions... and progressively depressed as things started falling apart. That's a power Grisham has - of involving the reader intimately.
But this book proved something I've suspected for a while. Occassionally, and more and more of late, John Grisham has a serious writer's block when it comes to ending.
His endings are like what some people have said to me about Pearl Jam's music (Which I didn't like hearing - I love Pearl Jam).
They never really end... just kind of stop being.
And this ending was a prime example of that... at some point, the Author's Note begins, and you're left thinking "HUH!?!??!"
"HUH?????!!!? I wanna burn this book" is not a good way for a book to leave you.. and hence, only 3 Stars for a book that, till about 75% of the book was a 5-Star.
Because the book left me with "HUH!??!?!?!"
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By A Reader on Aug. 15 2003
Format: Hardcover
I've been disillusioned with John Grisham for quite some time now. His latest books have just not measured up to the earlier ones, which feature thrilling plots and characters that you care about.
This isn't one of those earlier books.
Frankly, the minute that Clay Carter "sold his soul" for 15 million dollars (in the first few chapters of the book), I could predict the plot and the character development in two seconds. And I was pretty dead on.
The rest of the book is a dreary bore; attempting to give the reader a lesson in ethics, integrity, and doing the right thing. The problem is that Grisham is using Clay Carter, who has just taken 15 million for participating in a massive cover up with a big-wig pharmacutical company. With that small problem stuck in my mind, it was totally impossible for me to note or care when Clay suddenly decides to make it all better or do the right thing. Which was basically how I felt about all of the characters, from Clay's shallow, materialistic ex-fiance (real love-give me a break) to Clay's boring, narcissistic father.
Take it from me: skip this one, go back and read "A Time to Kill", "The Firm", or "The Rainmaker". It will be time better spent.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Douglas P. Murphy on Nov. 7 2008
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I found this book particularly interesting because I work in health care. Health care has spawned the side industry of health-related legal settlements. Class action lawsuits have taken this industry to a whole new level, and this book exposes the mechanisms of this legal area with Grisham's usual attention to detail and to the meticulous unfolding of the story. When thousands of people are physically or emotionally harmed by medications, products,etc. and hundreds of millions of dollars are mobilized, who benefits and why? Luxury jets, palacial homes, yachts, Caribbean getaways, mistresses populate this landscape. The view leaves one nauseous. The book has excitement and suspense and moves swiftly to the end.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By David M. Lovin on July 5 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
John Grisham's The King of Torts focuses on a lawyer named Clay Carter. He's a small time attorney in the public defender's office who is handed an unwinable murder case. A young man has shot someone in cold blood and Clay has to defend him. Just as he is about to get his way out of the case, a man approaches him and gives him the opportunity to make a lot of money by dropping the case, quitting his job with the PD, and opening his own firm. He learns that the young man who he was defending may not have been completely responsible for the murder and a drug company wants things swept under the rug.
This starts a chain of events that leads him to the top of the legal profession by doing mass class action suits, settling the cases, raking a third off the top, and paying his clients the pittance they had been promised. He wants more than anything to get back his girlfriend, who dumped him when he had no foreseeable future. Now he has a new life, new woman, new friends, and even his own jet.
But things are not all well. He is blind to things happening right in front of his face. I mentioned in my title that this book is like Citizen Kane. The main character in that film, Charles Foster Kane, is only concerned with money and power, and he achieves it at the cost of all human personal relationships. Clay Carter is also power hungry, but in a different way. His wealth is more tenuous and he eventually succumbs to his desires.
This book is very well written, interesting, fast paced, and fun. I read it in one evening, without putting it down. The message is a good one and it is something different from Grisham. Not a second of this book is in a courtroom. The legal proceedings take place in the form of settlements. After the many books he has written, Grisham still has the ability to weave interesting stories around great characters. I loved this book.
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