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The Rainmaker [Mass Market Paperback]

John Grisham
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (312 customer reviews)

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Mass Market Paperback, Jan. 2 1996 --  
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Book Description

Jan. 2 1996
It's summer in Memphis.  The sweat is sticking to Rudy Baylor's shirt and creditors are nipping at his heels.  Once he had aspirations of breezing through law school and punching his ticket to the good life.  Now he doesn't have a job or a prayer...except for one: an insurance dispute that leaves a family devastated and opens the door for a lawsuit, if Rudy can find a way to file it.

By the time Rudy gets to court, a heavyweight corporate defense team is there to meet him. And suddenly he's in over his head, plunged into a nightmare of lies and legal maneuverings.  A case that started small is exploding into a thunderous million-dollar war of nerves, skill and outright violence--a fight that could cost one young lawyer his life, or turn him into the biggest rainmaker in the land....

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Product Description

From Amazon

Rudy Baylor, a new law school graduate, once dreamed of the good life as a corporate attorney. Now he faces joblessness and bankruptcy--unless he can win an insurance case against a heavyweight team of lawyers, a case that starts small but mushrooms into a frightening war of nerve and legal skill that could cost Rudy not only his future, but also his life.

From Publishers Weekly

Grisham's intricate, spellbinding sixth novel differs from his last few?it's his only book with first-person narration and his first since his debut to be set in a courtroom?but the trademark Grisham touches are in place. Rookie attorney Rudy Baylor is the customary David fighting a legal Goliath (here a multibillion-dollar insurance company), and the suspense builds with impeccable pacing despite workaday prose. When the modestly sized law firm that contracted for his future services unexpectedly merges with a tony Ivy League firm, Rudy finds himself without a job and bankrupt. Filing a $10 million lawsuit takes away some of the sting, as does a lonely elderly woman's offer of low rent on a small apartment in exchange for rewriting her will. To make a living, Rudy finds himself chasing ambulances for a racketeering shyster, leading to his becoming enthralled with a beautiful young woman hospitalized by her husband's murderous attack. When Rudy agrees to represent the parents of a dying 22-year-old denied insurance coverage for a bone-marrow transplant, he finds that he is up against the firm that broke contract with him. Melding the courtroom savvy of A Time to Kill with the psychological nuance of The Chamber, imbued with wry humor and rich characters, this bittersweet tale, the author's quietest and most thoughtful, shows that Grisham's imagination can hold its own in a courtroom as well as on the violent streets outside. Major ad/promo; large-print edition, ISBN 0-385-47512-8; audio rights to BDD Audio.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By Eric
The Rainmaker by John Grisham is a very exciting novel. I read it in the span of two days because I could not put it down. The story goes around a young lawyer named Rudy; a young lawyer who just passed his bar exam, and stressed out with the bill collectors. So now, he takes a case against a huge medical coverage company because they did not live up to the promise of one of their clients; he eventually died from lung cancer, and they didnt come through with the money to pay for the doctor bills. So now, they hire a huge law coporation to take the case. Now Rudy is over his head, but he wants to win this case because this could make him or break him in his law career. While the case moves forward, he meets what John Grisham calls 'a ambulance chase' and they start taking cases from other people, and Rudy still working on the medical case. Then Rudy meets a woman who is being abused by her boyfriend, so Rudy falls for and protects her from him. Now as the medical case moves along, eventually Rudy wins the case of $50 million dollars in grivence pay and medical bills. Rudy is happy winning his first case. Now he then finds out that the medical insurance went bankrupt and the family and Rudy would not see a penny coming their way. So now, with a old Volvo (it has I believe 130,000 miles on it, correct me if I am wrong), he then leaves the small firm he had with his buddy of his, and his new girlfriend and get out of town.
The Rainmaker I thought was a good book, I have not read all of Grisham's novels, but the few i did read (The Rainmaker is one of them), I felt like the man can write a good tale. I cant really call myself a huge Grisham fan, but I like his writing. Anyway, good book and definitely worth reading.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Three stories for the price of one! June 21 2009
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Methinks that John Grisham has a mellower side to his writing than we've seen thus far.

Certainly "The Rainmaker", rather than being the legal thriller that one might have expected on the basis of his previous novels, is more of a gentle bittersweet general fiction novel comprised of three concurrent sub-plots that take place primarily in a legal setting.

In the first story, (of course, all three are intertwined to a certain extent and bump into one another, although each of the three would serve as a fine short story or novella on its own), Rudy Baylor graduates from law school with the hopeful vision of a young man destined for a rising career in a mainstream firm well known in the field of corporate law. When an unexpected takeover leaves him jobless and facing personal bankruptcy, he is forced by unexpected circumstances into the arms of his first client. A pleansant but very lonely (and surprisingly wealthy) elderly lady offers him rental accommodation at a price he couldn't possibly refuse in exchange for a review of her will.

In the second (and central) plot of the novel, Baylor unexpectedly becomes the attorney of record in a major lawsuit alleging fraud against a mega-rich insurance company that pads its profits by routinely rejecting legitimate insurance claims comfortable in the proven belief that only a small statistical percentage of those claims denied will actually be taken to court. His client is a 22 year old man, dying of leukemia. He can't afford the cost of a bone marrow transplant because his claim under the insurance policy he bought many years earlier has been rejected. The stakes are huge with a $10 million judgment hanging in the balance.
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By Donald Mitchell #1 HALL OF FAME TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Mass Market Paperback
We all know that to make a good joke, you've got to exaggerate the right elements while ignoring what isn't funny. John Grisham creates a slapstick winner with a book about a bumbling young lawyer who isn't going to Wall Street . . . in fact, he has to declare bankruptcy before he passes the bar exam.

But don't confuse this book with a humorous book about the law. This novel would have to be toned down by about 60 degrees before that would be possible. This is a comic book version of a funny story about "what if" a law student didn't have a job, any money, or any connections after three years of torts and briefs.

Rudy Baylor is dragged by his professor to a meeting of senior citizens to give out free advice. He meets the meeting's hostess who wants to change her will to favor a television evangelist with her millions. Rudy also meets the parents of a young man who will die from leukemia because the insurance company wouldn't pay for a bone marrow transplant.

This all seems like a pleasant way to spend a few hours finishing a class until Rudy's promised job evaporates in a shotgun law firm merger. Now, he tries to trade off his leads into some cash and some work. The complications are unexpected, unrealistic, and slapstick funny. There's a sweetness to Rudy's character that you won't find in many real lawyers that makes the book work.

I found myself wondering what pratfalls John Grisham would foist on poor Rudy next. That was a major part of the attraction of the story.

If you hate lawyers and insurance companies, you'll find nothing to discourage either view in this jaundiced critique of the legal profession.

But you'll have some smiles and chuckles along the way, neither of which would happen if there were any real lawyers around.
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Typical Grisham which I enjoy - not his best but still a captivating book
Published 10 days ago by Glen A Phillips
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Exactly as described
Published 2 months ago by khizz
4.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended. It was not what I expected from John ...
A real page turner!. I found this book to be enthralling. Highly recommended.

It was not what I expected from John Grisham.
Published 2 months ago by Bryan
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Excellent read I couldnt put it down
Published 4 months ago by Big H
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good read
I thoroughly enjoy John Grisham books and this one was full of intrigue and suspense. I have read a few of his novels and I have never been disappointed.
Published 5 months ago by joeyrou
4.0 out of 5 stars He did it one more time
Grisham does it again with a fast paced, hard to put down book. Love the fact that you always learn something when you read his books. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Author Samreen Ahsan
4.0 out of 5 stars John Grisham did again
The story line in this book was very good , it made you turn the pages . I watch the movie after , but the book was much better .
Published 7 months ago by Humming Bird
5.0 out of 5 stars The best I've read!
To me,The Rainmaker's uniqueness may be in the very human low expectations expressed by this young lawyer who constantly argues against himself while at the same time doing... Read more
Published 19 months ago by Roy Mayer
5.0 out of 5 stars "There's Nothing More Thrilling..."
Rudy Baylor makes it out of law school and away from his girlfriend with pennies to spare. He soon finds himself representing clients beyond his experience. Read more
Published 21 months ago by John M. Ford
4.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed with ending
This book has a superb plot and very interesting characters that are colorfully described by the author. Read more
Published on June 29 2004 by Jack Kelly
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