In writing the Crime novel ‘The Client’, John Grisham has quite effectively intertwined the plot, characters, themes and issues to create a dramatic and suspenseful story. To do this he creates strong interesting characters along with an in depth storyline to lure the reader in. John Grisham raises important themes and issues in all his novels, this story raises such issues as suicide and corruption. In ‘The Client’ we are faced with rather rough but also innocent young boy who is suddenly thrown into a complicated circle of lies, murder and revenge all because he was in the wrong place at the wrong time.
The incredible plot John Grisham has accumulated to complete the electrifying story of ‘The Client’ first starts with a capturing opening chapter. Grisham sets the scene with two young brothers, Mark and Ricky Sway, going off into the bushland near their home, the trailer park to experiment with a few cigarettes. After no more than three pages into the first chapter the action begins. Grisham effectively but also hastily sets the setting to the story then, to draw in the reader, explodes into the main event of the story, Romey’s suicide. Grisham has a amazing method of writing to make the reader feel part of the happening action. “Mark stared at the wild, glowing face just inches away. The eyes were red and wet. Fluids dripped from the nose and chin. ‘you little bastard’ he growled through clenched, dirty teeth.”
As the story unfolds the plot thickens. Jerome Clifford, the man who committed suicide was well known as at the time of the suicide. He was representing a Mafia member called Barry Muldanno in court for a high profile murder case. Grisham slowly provides us with more information throughout the story about who exactly Jerome was and his connections with the Mafia. Shortly after Mark’s encounter with Romey another character enters the story. Reggie Love is hired by Mark to be his lawyer. Reggie becomes involved quickly with Mark’s case, becoming a second mother to him. Reggie is a tough woman who is willing to fight all the way to get Mark out of any harm which he is obviously in. Although Reggie is a lawyer she also doubles as a detective as she searches into a dangerous arena of lies and corruption.
The story winds up with a fast and exciting ending. Reggie and Mark team up to go and find the so called ‘body’ which is meant to be buried at Romey’s home. Barry Muldanno and his Mafia mates are also pursuing the body. Grisham brings the story to a winding end when Mark Sway tells the court everything that Romey told him in the car and Reggie tells them where they can find the body. Mark and his family are hastily flown away and kept under the witness protection program.
John Grisham uses a very similar format for all his famous crime novels. Firstly he creates very strong and individual characters, in this case we follow the character of Mark Sway who intrigues the reader right at the beginning of the story with his rebellious and outspoken nature. Mark has very determined and controlling personality that we notice very quickly in the story. In the opening pages of the novel when mark tries to rescue the man in the car from gassing himself, Mark yells to Ricky, his younger brother “we’re not leaving until I say we’re leaving!”
Reggie Love is another vital character in the development of this story. Reggie is not your usual kind of lawyer in any way, firstly she is a woman, which is quite extraordinary, secondly she is very powerful and competent at that. Grisham constructed Reggie’s character to support Mark Sway’s lead role in the story, in doing this he had to make sure the two characters personalities would complement each other. In some ways Reggie and Mark are quite alike, their stubborn and resolute natures. In chapter nine of the novel where Mark was being interrogated by the FBI and several lawyers without his mother present, we observe Reggie’s truly amazing confrontation. “Its all right here on tape, fellas. You boys attempted to interrogate a child outside the presence of his mother.” Reggie has a great deal of confidence in herself to be working in such a male dominated position, she always comes out way ahead of Roy Foltrigg the federal Prosecutor.
John Grisham’s character of Barry the Blade Muldanno, The murderer of a United States Senator, adds a great tension to the story as he and his Mafia associates hold the driving force behind the main plot line. Barry Muldanno pursues Mark and his family with great vigour when he finds out that Mark may hold information as to where the body is hidden. For the continuation of the story the character of Barry Muldanno is responsible for providing the plot line with added suspense and thrill. In one particular excerpt mark is suddenly confronted and threatened by a man in an elevator holding a knife to his throat. “If you repeat a single word of it to anyone, including your lawyer, I’ll kill you. And I’ll kill your mother and your little brother.” There are several other sections in the novel simular to this one, which Grisham has used to heighten the level of thrill for the reader.
In the story, there are many themes and issues addressed, some more noticeable than others. Grisham uses some of these to further enhance the suspense throughout the novel. Suicide is confronted right at the beginning of the story when Jerome Clifford takes his own life. Jerome was in fear of his life feeling scared and frightened, thinking suicide was the only way out for him. There is much corruption and Mafia activities at play, mob members using high levels of power to intimidate Mark. Reggie finds it quite difficult to gain trust between her and Mark, Mark is afraid to trust anyone especially lawyers. Grisham enables Mark and Reggie to slowly build trust and friendship into their relationship which helps them to work as a team. Alcoholism torments both Reggie and Marks families, Mark loosing his father and Reggie loosing her precious children. Mark is very angry about his father and Reggie is upset and distraught that her husband could betray her in such a way. Both characters share a lot of the same emotions which builds a link between them both.
John Grisham has written a very involving plot line following the story of an innocent young boy who knows to much and his lawyer who will fight right until the very end. Grisham seems to write his stories in a special way, using strong emotional characters and captivating themes to make us feel a part of the drama and suspense throughout the entire novel.