Ford County
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Ford County

3.48 of 5 stars 3.48  ·  rating details  ·  10,893 ratings  ·  1,399 reviews
In his first collection of short stories John Grisham takes us back to Ford County, Mississippi, the setting of his first novel, A Time to Kill.

Wheelchair-bound Inez Graney and her two older sons, Leon and Butch, take a bizarre road trip through the Mississippi Delta to visit the youngest Graney brother, Raymond, who's been locked away on death row for eleven years. It cou...more
Hardcover, 308 pages
Published November 3rd 2009 by Doubleday (first published November 3rd 2008)
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A Time to Kill by John GrishamThe Firm by John GrishamThe Client by John GrishamThe Street Lawyer by John GrishamThe Pelican Brief by John Grisham
The best of John Grisham
27th out of 29 books — 185 voters
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40th out of 96 books — 20 voters

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This book was so bad I couldn't finish it. I normally have enjoyed every other Grisham book and can depend on them for good light entertainment and occasionally a very well done, enlightening story. Ford County must have been written because Grisham had a commitmment with his publisher to churn something out. The book is a series of seven short stories abouth life in Ford County, Mississippi the scene of an early Grisham novel. I went through the first two stories and wondered; why did he bother...more
As most reader's know, Grisham is the master of the legal thriller. Surprise, surprise! He is also a very talented storyteller! What a delight this collection of short stories was.

He takes us to Ford County, Mississippi where we are introduced to quite a collection of characters. Some rather dull and normal, others quirky and pretty extreme all of them with an odd story to share. His words flow and paint the picture of these folks as they struggle with whatever curveball life has thrown them....more
At the end of this collection of stories, the reader is left with a deep, unsettling ambivalence. On the one hand, Grisham wields a sense of place and of language with a confidence that’s hard to beat. He places his characters in memorable, finely wrought settings, he gives them richly evoked material to work with, he writes dialogue that has the ring of truth to it. And then he observes those characters, as they move, live, and (mostly) suffer, with a chilly, anthropological detachment and emot...more
John Grisham heads back to his literary roots of Ford County. For those of you who don't recall (or didn't read the dust jacket), Ford County is the setting for his first (and possibly best) book "A Time to Kill."

After a disappointing legal thriller for his last new book, it's nice to see Grisham get back to the business of storytelling again with this collection of short stories.

Grisham pushes his boundaries as a writer, offering up stories that offer humor, pathos and character building. The r...more
Neil Mudde
An absolute delight to read, I am not usually a short story reader, and was surprised this was, off course having read all Grisham's earlier and som sensational work, I was not sure if I was going to read it, glad I did.
He was able to take me to Ford County and give me a glimpse of what the people are like, as in every situation he portrays only a specific kind of family or person. I do not want to get into the story detail and by doing so spoil it for those people who are intending to read this...more
Nanette Bulebosh
Loved it. He makes the people he writes about in Mississippi so believable. Several weeks after reading it, I am still thinking of some of the portraits he gives us:

- the impoverished mother and her two grown sons traveling to the state prison for the third son's execution for murder. She's in a wheelchair strapped to the floor of a van they had to borrow from the older son's boss. The family's last meeting before the prisoner enters the gas chamber is quite poignant. This is the most tragic st...more
I picked Ford County up to listen to as I was traveling to a conference. Interestingly enough, I have not read any other John Grisham novels, but this appealed to me because it consisted of short stories. I like listening to short stories because you can listen for short blocks of time and take a rest without forgetting necessary details to keep you in the plot (as with listening to a novel).

Ford County consists of seven short stories set in and around Clanton, Mississippi. The stories are rathe...more
Did you ever read a book about an area and decide that you might want to go and visit or perhaps retire in that area? John Grisham's Ford County, a collection of stories, had the reverse effect on me. I don't ever want to even get close to that geographical area. Why? It appears that Ford County, if Grisham's works here are any indication, is the capitol of Deep, Dark, Depression, U.S.A. The people in these stories are all so sad and their situations are so dark that on would need the light from...more
Nancy Price - Short Stories: Ford County by John Grisham

"Ford County," is collection of seven short stories set in a small Mississippi town. They're written about the fictional Southern town of Clanton, population 10,000. The stories move steadily along. The first “Blood Drive” is about three young guys that set out to donate blood for and man injured in a construction accident, misfortune follows them on their journey. The second story is “Fetching Raymond” about two brothers who go to a nearby...more
I have always loved short stories and most of the time wish many novels would have been handled as such, but THEY JUST DON'T MAKE MONEY for the publishing houses so unless your name is John Grisham, the editors and agents will take a good short story and S T R E T C H it out until it is novel length.

So it was fun to read these 6 stories. You are able to get such a glimpse into small town Mississippi life through the eyes of vastly different charachters in such a short time. Ultimately these sto...more
Tom Mueller
Back to what I think of as Grisham's roots; Ford County, MS. This is where it all started, with _A Time to Kill_. The tragic humor in some of these stories reminds me of favorite authors, Larry Brown and Harry Crews.

Especially moving is Grisham's short story "Funny Boy", the poignant end of life story of a young man estranged from his moneyed Southern family. Having been ostracized by his entire town (on his return from San Fran), he is sent by his family to live the rest of his l...more
Dec 28, 2009 Michael rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Michael by: Saw the book on a list
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I normally like Grisham and I did like his writing style in this book. My complaint is that the characters were all stereotypical red-necks. Yes, Clanton, Mississippi is rural, but not everyone living there is prejudiced, immoral, lazy, or scheming. For example, one story was about a gay man who returns to Clanton to die of AIDS in 1989. He is shunned by his wealthy family (and everyone else) and must live in the black section of town with a spinster who stands to inherit her house from the man'...more
Very rarely do I begin a book and am not able to trudge through it. I expected so much of this book because I am a huge John Grisham fan, from his legal thrillers to his fictional books and even his non-fiction. This book fell so flat for me, however, that I couldn't even finish it.

I supposed that when I hear a book is full of southern short stories, I immediately begin to compare it to Eudora Welty or Flannery O'Connor. Their stories always had a finality to them, a twist in some, and just mad...more
This book contains 7 short stories that take place in the same county than one of Grisham's most famous book : A Time to Kill.
The stories are uneven, 4 deserve 2 or 3 stars, I won't go into details on them.
Fetching Raymond deserves 4 stars and is about a mother and her 2 older sons visiting her younger son in jail on the day of his execution. It is at times very witty and funny.

Michael's Room deserves a 4 stars too and is about a Lawyer visited by his past and about what he did to defend a big i...more
Mike The Situation
Great book! After the first chapter, i was hooked. This book isn't just one story, it is a compilation of stories, all of them taking place in Ford County. The book was written in an interesting and different way. At first I didn't like the way the book was written, however as the book went on I began to like it.
The book was not about just one topic, each chapter was a different story with different characters, but the same setting, Ford County. He is able to introduce the reader to the situati...more
James Korsmo
In this fascinating collection of short stories, Grisham shows his characteristic flare for interesting characters and situations, as well as his ability to turn a plot on a legal storyline. The seven stories in this collection demonstrate a nice variety of characters and plot, some having tinges of a more traditional Grisham legal thriller and some having no legal theme at all. They are all held together, though, by their setting in Ford County, Mississippi, which readers will recall from books...more
Thom Swennes
This is a collection of seven independent short stories depicting a variety of different characters from Ford County, Mississippi. These characters are vividly brought to life and the humid air of the Deep South can almost be felt. Some of these stories show a subtle humor even when the plot is everything but. The language reminds me of Bill Bryson’s romp through a strange country. I can almost taste the grits and black-eyed peas.
The seven stories offer a rare and unique glimpse in a rural life...more
This is a change of pace for me with Grisham as the book consists of a bunch of short stories. I prefer his normal style, but this was ok.
1) Blood Drive - Nothing special. I would have liked to find out what happened to the third person of the group, and I wish it would have focused more on a resolution with leaving the wallet on the driveway. I felt it was all over the place (1 Star)

2) Fetching Raymond - This one was pretty good. The conversation between the mother and her sons during the driv...more
June Ahern
I have enjoyed John Grisham's books for years and this is one , "Ford County" with it's several short stories is no exception. Once again Mr. Grisham's use of language has entertained me again. This book is different from the author's usual complete novels, but each story has a conflict, a lesson (of sorts) and a resolution or satisfying ending.

"Blood Drive" with it's three Ford County young men who embark on a trip to Memphis to donate blood to a fellow FC who had an accident is very funny. "C...more
Alex Markman
John Grisham's Wonderful Sense of Humour

Distinct features of Grisham’s novels are intrigues, struggle for justice and tough moral dilemmas for his characters. This kind of plot usually does not leave space for humour. Rather, it could be even detrimental to the main idea of it, distracting the reader’s attention and diluting suspense with unnecessary components. There is one of Grisham’s short stories though, that accommodates both suspense and humour: Quiet Heaven.
The very title is sarcastic,...more
Nov 18, 2009 Richard rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: The first story to anyone. The rest I would suggest you ignore.
Recommended to Richard by: I read all Mr. Grisham's work.
This is a collection of seven short stories from the ridiculous to most poignant, all set in rural Mississippi. The first story, Blood Drive, is in the finest tradition of Oh, Brother, Where Art Thou? Three casual acquaintances rush off in all directions to get to Memphis to donate blood for another young citizen who may have been hurt or even killed in an industrial accident. One is not seen again for a year after last being seen having unseen persons shooting at him in a parking lot.

Although s...more
Andrea Morris
Ford County is my first introduction to John Grisham, and I was very pleased. Ford County is a series of short stories involving different people who live in Ford County. Each story also involves some sort of legal matter as well as some colorful characters.

As a fellow lawyer, I found the stories remarkably accurate regarding common misconceptions about lawyers. Yes, there are some lawyers who do commit terrible malpractice; there are death row inmates who write to appeals courts truly believin...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I have read all that I am going to read of Ford County for now at least. I read the first 3 stories in this book of short stories, and I can't find a reason to read the rest of them. I am so disappointed in this book. I was so glad to have another Grisham book to read, but my hopes have been dashed by these stories. I can't find anything redeeming about the characters or the story that I would care enough about them to know who they are or what their lives are like. I could find nothing inspirin...more
I found this book to be very entertaining. My wife started reading this, and after the second short story - said that she could not take it any more, and stopped reading it. I found all 7 of the short stories entertaining. Grisham brilliantly sets up each story with characters and settings and then weaves an interesting story of intrigue and mystery. He, the story teller, is detached from the story, but yet in the same sense, exposes the reader to all kinds of emotions. This book treads on some...more
Tonight I finished this book of stories by John Grisham. I thought the book was very well-done. I am very particular about short stories and think they are a difficult format in which to write. To write an economical piece that is also "complete" has to be a great challenge for a writer, and Grisham has succeeded. Some of the stories were better than others, but all were good.

In these stories, he returns to Clanton, the setting of his first novel, A Time to Kill. The characters are real and dive...more
I loved this book. I was needing something to listen to, and I finished this short story collection in two days. John Grisham reads his stories with his southern accent, and it's just great.

This is his take on a small town in rural Mississippi and some stories about a few of the folks that live there. Grisham's superb descriptions made these characters come alive. If you grew up in a small town, and especially if you have known a few "good ol' boys" in your lifetime, this is a great read. Ford...more
Nick Brett
I should warn fans of Grisham’s thrillers, that this is not a thriller. It is a collection of short stories set in “Ford County” and are mainly character studies, stories that present a character with a fairly light plot. I have seen mixed reviews and I fall into the “so what” camp. The point for me is that there is no tension, no twist in the tale, no central clever elements to the stories. Maybe there is a feel of small town USA, maybe there are interesting character studies, but not in my vie...more
I loved Ford County! John Grisham's characters are funny, real and endearing. I was drawn into the small town life with it's unique pool of interesting people. I was amazed at how many characters were introduced in each story, and all the sub stories going on as well, without it being boring, confusing, or hard to follow. Mr. Grisham writes in such a precise, clear, and 'straight to the point' way, and yet offers up so much detail and setting without all the fluff. So refreshing! My only wish wa...more
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Gwinnett County P...: Ford County 1 4 Sep 26, 2013 09:09AM  
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"Long before his name became synonymous with the modern legal thriller, he 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.

Born on February 8, 1955 in Jonesboro, Arkansas, to a construction worker and a homemaker, John Grisham as a child dreamed of...more
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“It's as if we spend our entire lives avoiding Jell-O but it is always there at the end, waiting.” 12 likes
“But [Stanley Wade] instead removed his glasses and wiped his eyes. They were moist not from fear but from the harsh reality of being confronted by one of his victims. How many others were out there? Why had he chosen to spend his career screwing these people?

~from "Michael's Room"~
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