15 Sept 2019

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Book Review / The Testament by John Grisham

In a plush Virginia office, a rich, angry old man is furiously rewriting his will. With his death just hours away, Troy Phelan wants to send a message to his children, his ex-wives, and his minions, a message that will touch off a vicious legal battle and transform dozens of lives.

Because Troy Phelan's new will names a sole surprise heir to his eleven-billion-dollar fortune: a mysterious woman named Rachel Lane, a missionary living deep in the jungles of Brazil.

Enter the lawyers. Nate O'Riley is fresh out of rehab, a disgraced corporate attorney handpicked for his last job: to find Rachel Lane at any cost. As Phelan's family circles like vultures in D.C., Nate is crashing through the Brazilian jungle, entering a world where money means nothing, where death is just one misstep away, and where a woman - pursued by enemies and friends alike - holds a stunning surprise of her own.

Published:     28th December 1999
Goodreads :  Click here
Series or Stand-Alone:  Stand-Alone
Source:  Owned


Now this was the book I just could not wait getting to read when I decided I wanted to read all of John Grisham's novels (from the very first book and in order).  I have read quite a few of his novels many many years ago, but not all of them and this one was the one that I remembered the most and since reading it the first time had kept it on my favourite books of all time list ever since.  On second reading, I enjoyed this even more than the first time I read it - if that is at all possible!

Although the overall story in this book is that Troy Phelan dies leaving billions to an unknown daughter and we follow what happens next, we do follow each of the other sons and daughters of Troy that when he was alive he viewed as disappointments.

My favourite part of this book was following Nate, who is a lawyer but has suffered from drug/alcohol problems and had, until recently, been in a rehab facility.  He is called upon by his firm to go and find this unknown daughter who just so happens to be in Brazil, in the middle of nowhere, living as a missionary.  Not only do we follow Nate's journey, we learn more about Rachel (the unknown daughter) right from her past, present and hoped future.  This part for me was both addicting and heartbreaking in places.

Even though I found this story to be slow paced, I just could not put it down and read it almost in one entire day!  If you have not yet picked up a John Grisham novel, this would be a good one to start at (and then follow it with A Time to Kill and go from there).