Synopses & Reviews
Kyle McAvoy grew up in his father's small-town law office in York, Pennsylvania. He excelled in college, was elected editor-in-chief of The Yale Law Journal, and his future has limitless potential.
But Kyle has a secret, a dark one, an episode from college that he has tried to forget. The secret, though, falls into the hands of the wrong people, and Kyle is forced to take a job he doesn't want even though it's a job most law students can only dream about.
Three months after leaving Yale, Kyle becomes an associate at the largest law firm in the world, where, in addition to practicing law, he is expected to lie, steal, and take part in a scheme that could send him to prison, if not get him killed.
With an unforgettable cast of characters and villains from Baxter Tate, a drug-addled trust fund kid and possible rapist, to Dale, a pretty but seemingly quiet former math teacher who shares Kyle's "cubicle" at the law firm, to two of the most powerful and fiercely competitive defense contractors in the country and featuring all the twists and turns that have made John Grisham the most popular storyteller in the world, The Associate is vintage Grisham.
"Bestseller Grisham's contemporary legal thriller offers an action-and-suspense plot reminiscent of that of his breakout book, 1991's The Firm, in contrast to 2008's didactic The Appeal, which served as a platform for his concerns about the corrupting effects of judicial elections. Kyle McAvoy, a callow Yale Law School student, dreams of a public service gig on graduation, until shadowy figures blackmail him with a videotape that could revive a five-year-old rape accusation. Instead of helping those in need, McAvoy accepts a position at a huge Wall Street firm, Scully & Pershing, whose clients include a military contractor enmeshed in a $800 billion lawsuit concerning a newly-designed aircraft. McAvoy can avoid exposure of his past if he feeds his new masters inside information on the case. Readers should be prepared for some predictable twists, an ending with some unwarranted ambiguity and some unconvincing details (the idea that a secret file room in a high stakes litigation case would be closed from 10:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. every night stretches credulity to the breaking point). Still, Grisham devotees should be satisfied, even if this is one of his lesser works." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"McAvoy's fight for survival against seemingly overwhelming odds is a fitting one for our times. The ending is unexpected, and it's a toss-up whether readers will be satisfied or hunger for more." USA Today
"[An] absorbing thriller that's a fitting follow-up to The Firm." Boston Globe
If you thought Mitch McDeere was in trouble in The Firm, wait
until you meet Kyle McAvoy, The Associate.
About the Author
Long before his name became synonymous with the modern legal thriller, John Grisham was working 60-70 hours a week at a small Southaven, Mississippi law practice, squeezing in time before going to the office and during courtroom recesses to work on his hobby writing his first novel.