I've read every one of John Grisham's books and while I like almost all of them, I feel that his best work was done in his first 5 books, those being A Time To Kill, The Firm, The Pelican Brief, The Client, and The Chamber. The Chamber, to me, is the most powerful among these books because more than any other book by Grisham, it brings a hot button justice issue out in the open and it challenges the way people think about that issue. It is just as simple to say "an eye for an eye" as it is to say that any killing is wrong and this book definitely makes you consider both sides of the issue.
The ending scene is, without a doubt, the most power scene that you will find in any Grisham book. I am not a very emotional person but I can say that I was moved to tears by The Chamber's final pages. If you're a Grisham fan or a book enthusiast of any kind or even if you have a strong stance on either side of the capital punishment debate, you simply must read The Chamber.
Grisham is brilliant. His experience as an attorney makes him excel at his craft. Better than any "Law and Order" on t.v. Take the night off and read a good book, instead!
In 1967 in Greenville, Mississippi, known Klan member Sam Cayhall is accused of bombing the law offices of Jewish civil rights activist Marvin Kramer, killing Kramer's two sons. Cayhall's first trial, with an all-white jury and a Klan rally outside the courthouse, ends in a hung jury: the retrial six months later has the same outcome.
Twelve years later an ambitious district attorney in Greenville reopens the case. Much has changed since 1967, and this time, with a jury of eight whites and four blacks, Cayhall is convicted. He is transferred to the state penitentiary at Parchman to await execution on death row.
In 1990, in the huge Chicago law firm of Kravitz & Bane, a young lawyer named Adam Hall asks to work on the Cayhall case, which the firm was handled on a pro bono basis for years. But the case is all but lost and time is running out: within weeks Sam Cayhall will finally go to the gas chamber. Why in the world would Adam want to get involved?
Of Grisham's novel, this is one of my favorites. The issue of the death chamber, of what is truth, what is lies and what lies past in times that still haunts everyone today.... Hatred, racism, murder, pain... An excellent read.
Very interesting, fast moving. Not a slow page in the whole book. Hard to put down.