20 Best John Grisham Books

The term “page-turner” is often used to describe the books that readers can’t put down. Well, John Grisham’s novels are page-turners in the truest sense of the word. He is one of the most popular authors in America. For now, his books are translated into several languages and are bestsellers all over the world.

John Grisham is regarded as the best author for writing Legal Thrillers. He was born in 1955 and got his Doctorate from the University of Mississippi of Law. After practicing law for a few years, he launched his new novel “A time to kill,” later turned into a film in 1996. His several books are turned into movies, and many famous actors like Sandra Bullock, Tom Cruise, and Mattews McConaughey starred in several films. 

His work mostly revolves around crime fiction, legal crime thrillers, and Southern Gothic genres. He has written noticeable fictional and non-fictional novels and short stories. So, if you are interested in reading more thriller books, you can start with short stories. 

If you’re looking for a great read this fall, look no further than these 20 best John Grisham books!

List of 20 Best Books by John Grisham

Here is the list of a few of the best books by John Grisham that I recommend you to read. Almost all these books are available on Kindle Online store and Amazon. 

This is a debut novel of John Grisham that has the honor of the overall highest ranking. It was written back in 1989 that narrates the story of a father who is grieving over his daughter. The young black daughter who was raped brutally and murdered in Mississippi county.

This book is all about the racket of emotions about the girl’s father, who is going through a lot of things. It is quite an interesting and captivating story that will keep you up until you finish it.  

The Firm is the story of an ambitious graduate whose entire future changes when he comes across a prestigious law firm. He may also get involved in the mafia as the story processes, 

This book keeps you on your toes right from the beginning till the end. The author has done an excellent job of keeping suspense throughout the novel. It is fast-paced, thrilling, and exciting to read, with twists at every corner.

The first novel by John Grisham has a gripping storyline and leaves you wanting more. If you are looking for the best work for John Grisham, The Firm is one of them.

The next book on our list is The Pelican Brief that was published back in 1993. It is one of the best legal thriller novels by John Grisham. 

The storyline follows two Supreme Court Justices murdered in an assassination plot and a law student who discovers their deaths in advance. This book is well-constructed with all the twists and turns that keep you glued to your Kindle or paperback throughout. 

The next book in our list is The Chamber. It was published in 1994, and the protagonist is a young lawyer named Adam Hall. He is assigned to handle the last appeal of his grandfather Sam Cayhall who was sentenced to death by lethal injection.

This story is set in Mississippi and deals with serious topics like race, rape, capital punishment, and more.. Overall, it is a great book with an emotional and gripping storyline. You can get this book from Amazon to know more.

This is one of the most thrilling novels of John Grisham that was published in 1995. It quickly became a New York Times Bestseller. In this book, the leading character Rudy Baylor is a bright but unskilled high school graduate. He works to help a client whose insurance firm refuses to pay for his daughter’s health-care treatments.

Rudy begins to question whether or not he will make it as an attorney at all while juggling his job at the local law center and trying to win a hospital malpractice lawsuit. There are many themes discussed like morals, relationships, family values, and also the courage of conviction.  

6- The Runaway Jury

The Runaway Jury is a story that revolves around the world of criminal law. It was published in 1996, but the movie was released in 2003.

This book follows one jury member or another, and their susceptibility to manipulation, through each chapter. And it’s like a courtroom drama about the plaintiff and defendant, with how they influence juries to win cases.

7- The Partner

The Partner is one of the most personal books that John has ever written. Almost all of his stories have been about lawyers, and this book is no different, but its protagonist is a lawyer who’s also a thief. He’s a good guy gone bad, with some serious problems in his life.

I think it’s among those few novels from Grisham where he looks at the nature of greed and how it can erupt into violence if left unchecked. Moreover, he delivers another entertaining masterpiece to keep his readers busy, fascinating and guessing things to the very end. 

8- The Street Lawyer

The Street Lawyer is one of the most interesting works by Grisham. It’s a fast-paced tale about an idealistic young lawyer who finds himself on the run for his life. He has nothing but the contents of his bank account and the expensive clothes on his back. And he’s got to stay alive long enough to find out why people are after him.

This book has many interesting elements like friendship, family values, loyalty, greed, revenge, etc. All these characteristics make it worth reading once. He uses this story to look at homelessness in America and how it relates to things that are happening outside our borders today. 

9- The Testament

The thousands of John Grisham fans adore The Testament. In this book, the main protagonist is a wealthy man found dead in his bedroom with no signs of disturbance or foul play. His entire estate and fortune will be left to his son unless someone can show that he did it while still alive. After several months of searching, the only candidate for this task appears to be one of the deceased’s ex-wives.

This work tells an amazing tale about greed and lust to make money at any cost; moreover, it’s also got some powerful messages to send across regarding family values and traditions. You can get it’s hard copy, or you can also read it on kindle. 

10- Skipping Christmas

Skipping Christmas is another touching book written by John Grisham. It was published in 2001, and it narrates various important things like how your family can be saved from commercialization every holiday season. It has 2 main characters Luther and Nora Krank, who are simple yet powerful.

The main reason behind their decision to skip Christmas is their son’s shocking news that he’s not coming home for X-mas. It leads them to decide against wasting money on decorations, cards, presents, etc., which they did last year.

However, this single act starts more than enough trouble for all series of events that unfold throughout the novel.  

11- Calico Joe

Calico Joe is another wonderful work of John Grisham that was published in 2012. This amazing book narrates the story of an adult man who never thought about his father until he became a famous baseball star with the Boston Red Sox. He has two daughters who are not like him because they love their dad no matter what happens.

The father, Jerry Sr. comes back to his son’s life when he is about to hit the home run record under strange circumstances. Meanwhile, it also explains how cruel people can be towards athletes and celebrities just for making some bucks off their success without sacrificing anything for their name or fame.

12- The Summons

This is another amazing novel by John Grisham that was released in 2002. It has a wonderful set of characters like Ray Atlee, Forrest, and Abner Louima. All three men are related to each other. But, they all have had different life experiences with their own stories of success and failure. All these characters live under one roof where they share good and bad times throughout the story.

The Summons is another gripping tale from John Grisham that will leave you spellbound right till the end of the story. His writing style is similar to The Firm or A Time to Kill, which you can easily enjoy if you didn’t read it earlier. 

13- The Last Juror

Published in 2004, this John Grisham book tells the story of Willie Traynor and his newly opened newspaper bureau. He has shifted to a fictional town and rented an out-of-date office to conduct interviews. All he wants is to generate some news stories to bring success to his business.

But things are not as easy as it seems because there is no real news in the small town. Also, he doesn’t have any money or resources.

This story takes place in a small Mississippi community called Clanton. Every character from this book has been created from imagination. Still, they closely resemble those people who lived here many years before. 

14- The Whistler

The Whistler is one of the best books that was published in 2016. It investigates the relationship between the criminals and the cops. The story is set in Florida, where people have found ways to beat the system, both legally and illegally.

This Whistler introduces us to Lacy Stolz, a young prosecutor who believes in her work and commitment towards justice. She has built up her career by putting bad guys behind bars and keeping them locked for many years until they get their time served.

But when she decides to take down a local sheriff’s drug operation, he goes after her with vengeance and hatred. Soon, she may find herself facing consequences that she never thought were possible. 

15- The Guardians

The Guardians is another one of John Grisham books that was published in 2019. It narrates the story of a young lawyer in a small town of North Florida who was killed one night at his desk while he was working late. 

The killers left no clue at all. There are no suspects, no witnesses, and the case is a complete mystery. Well, this event will turn everything upside down.

In this book, Grisham attempted to recapture the magic of his earlier works, and he succeeded. The characters, plot, and writing will remind you of his previous work. This book is a must-read, so give it a try.

16- Rogue Lawyer

Rogue Lawyer is a story of Grisham that explores the law world but from an unusual perspective. The novel introduces us to Sebastian Rudd, a lawyer- biker and “works” out of his Jeep. In addition, he represents criminals, scumbags, con men, rapists, drug dealers, etc., who are hated by everyone else.

But when he gets involved with a naïve rookie cop, things change completely for him. This book has won the hearts of many readers within a very short period after it was published. It has everything inside, like suspenseful crime thrillers mixed with compelling drama and passionate romance to entertain people wholeheartedly.

17- The Racketeer 

John Grisham’s The Racketeer is a very nice book that the author has written with a brilliant plot. It is quite an epic story of the crime and punishment of a man who is gone wretch in justice halls. 

The Racketeer follows a story of a federal judge who dies, and two men discover his involvement in crimes that can shake the whole nation. This novel is full of suspenseful twists and turns which take you to the edge of your seats from beginning till end.

18- Gray Mountain

In Gray Mountain, Grisham returns to his roots with a compelling legal thriller. He has been experimenting much in recent years, and it is good to see him move back towards these roots.

Samantha is a main character who is a big city lawyer. After being engaged as a legal counsel for a mining firm, she comes to Brady.

She soon finds herself engulfed in litigation that may result in death, painfully exposing local secrets while combating her demons. In this new emotional novel, the author draws on powerful forces to clash, testing family ties and bringing you into an unforgettable narrative about justice and betrayal.

19- The Litigators 

This Grisham novel was published in 2011, representing the 2 sides of law practice i-e ambulance chasers and corporate lawyers. The author later created the character David Zinc who quits the lucrative but horrible job and ends up with an ambulance chaser. 

Grisham does the full justice to this book as well as he is a master in always showing the ugly side of justice and law systems. As the story progresses, things get more complicated. You should get ‘The Litigators’ to enjoy the full sensational storyline if you are a legal thriller fan. 

20- Sycamore Row

John Grisham returns to the courtroom for the first time since A Time to Kill. He weaves a gripping tale of power, revenge, and justice that has gone wrong terribly. 

Seth Hubbard is quite a wealthy man with lung cancer. He doesn’t trust anyone, and before he hangs himself, he leaves a handwritten will. This act drags his children, maid, and Jake into a big conflict and raises many questions.

Like why would Hubbard leave almost all of his wealth to his maid? Has chemotherapy and painkillers affected his thinking ability and more? If you are looking for a strong storyline with twisted characters, Sycamore Row can be the best book for you!


What is considered the best John Grisham books?

Many of John Grisham’s books have been on the bestseller list, but his most famous book is A Time to Kill. Some readers may also appreciate The Client, adapted into a feature film starring Susan Sarandon as Reggie Love.

Which one of John Grisham books?

The firm, written in 1991, is considered to be the best-selling John Grisham novel. This novel sold over 7 million copies and was adapted into a movie starring Tom Cruise as Mitch McDeere.

What is the recent book of John Grisham?

The recent book of John Grisham is” The Judge’s List: A Novel,” which is the third book of The Whistler Series.

Final Thoughts about Best Books by John Grisham

There is no doubt that the books written by John Grisham are full of thrill and suspense. If you haven’t read any book from this author yet, it will be a treat for you to start with his best work in the legal drama genre “A Time to Kill”. But, in case you have already read some of his books, this list will help you answer any questions about your favorite author.

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