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Review: The Guardians by John Grisham

Title: The Guardians
AuthorJohn Grisham
Year Published: 2019

Genre: Adult fiction
Pages: 370
Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Location (my 2019 Google Reading map)USA (AL, AR, FL, GA, ID, NC, TN, VA) and Martinique (French Caribbean)

FTC Disclosure: I bought this with my own money

Summary (from the inside flap of the book): In the small Florida town of Seabrook, a young lawyer named Keith Russo was shot dead at his desk as he worked late one night. The killer left no clues. There were not witnesses, no one with a motive. But police soon came to suspect Quincy Miller, a young black man who was once a client of Russo's.

Quincy was tried, convicted, and sent to prison for life. For twenty-two years he has languished in prison, maintaining his innocence. But no one was listening. He had no lawyer, no advocate on the outside. In desperation, he writes a letter to Guardian Ministries, a small nonprofit run by Cullen Post, a lawyer who is also and Episcopal minister.

Guardian accepts only a few innocence cases at a time. Cullen Post travels the country fighting wrongful convictions and taking on clients forgotten by the system. With Quincy Miller, though, he gets far more than he's bargained for. Powerful, ruthless people murdered Keith Russo, and they do not want Quincy Miller exonerated.

They killed on lawyer twenty-two years ago, and they will kill another without a second thought.

Review: I know exactly what I'm getting when I pick up a John Grisham to read and that is comforting. But, I was surprised that this novel has a topic that is quite different from his usual lawyer/embezzlement topics: lawyers working to free the innocent that are on death row. It's a topic that I find really interesting so I was looking forward to the read.

This is one of my favorite Grisham novels as it combines the interesting topics of court room drama, prison stories, and crime. The cases of the men they are trying to release from prison are interesting and the side stories that fill out the novel are also ones that kept me intrigued as I read.

I definitely liked the characters. Frankie, released through the innocence project, is a good helper, working behind the scenes to get stuff done. The narrator, Cullen Post, is real and believable, and someone that I would want on my side. He knows when to bend the rules, but mostly does it all legally. The main prisoner, Quincy, is a guy you want to cheer for and hope that he is released before the novel ends.

If you like Grisham and like the idea of a novel based on a true story, because this is, then I suggest reading The Guardians.

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