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John Grisham

John Grisham (born February 8, 1955) is a noted American author.

He was born in Jonesboro, Arkansas and majored in accounting at Mississippi State University. After graduating from law school at Ole Miss in 1981, he went on to practice law for nearly a decade in Southaven, specializing in criminal defense and personal injury litigation.

In 1983, he was elected to the state House of Representatives and served until 1990.

Long before his name became synonymous with the modern legal drama genre, John Grisham worked as a small town lawyer. He used his spare time to work on a passion -- to write his first novel.

One day at the Dessoto County courthouse, Grisham overheard the harrowing testimony of a twelve-year-old rape victim and was inspired to start a novel exploring what would have happened if the girl's father had murdered her assailants. He spent three years on A Time to Kill and finished it in 1987. Initially rejected by many publishers, it was eventually bought by Wynwood press, who gave it a modest 5,000 copy printing and published it in June 1988.

The day after Grisham completed A Time to Kill, he began work on another novel, the story of a hotshot young attorney lured to an apparently perfect law firm that was not what it appeared. That second novel, The Firm, became the bestselling novel of 1991.

Publishers Weekly declared him "the bestselling novelist of the 90s.”

Grisham lives with his wife Renee and their two children Ty and Shea. The family splits their time between their Victorian home on a farm in Mississippi and a plantation near Charlottesville, VA.



  • The Summons (2002)
  • A Painted House (2001)
  • The Brethren (2000)
  • The Testament (1999)
  • The Street Lawyer (1998)
  • The Partner (1997)
  • The Runaway Jury (1996)
  • The Rainmaker (1995)
  • The Chamber(1994)
  • The Client (1993)
  • The Pelican Brief (1992)
  • The Firm (1991)
  • A Time to Kill (1989)


  • The Gingerbread Man

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