babyhippoface's Reviews > The Appeal

The Appeal by John Grisham
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Jan 28, 2008

it was ok
bookshelves: infuriating, grown-up-stuff
Recommended for: people who are on the edge and just need one teensy push to go completely over?
Read in February, 2008

This book has made me angrier than any I've read in years.

Okay, first off --what is with the absolutely horrid neon orange color of the jacket back? Who picked this? Must have been colorblind. Each time I reached for this book my eyes felt violated.

*SPOILER ALERT* If you haven't read it yet, stop reading now...

Second, well, let's just say it: the ending was even more offensive than the neon orange jacket back. The book was well-written, compelling (and yes, possibly completely undeserving of that one-star rating up above), and I understand what Grisham was trying to do, but I hate what he did. Hate. H-A-T-E.

Made me forget all the previously compelling stuff and just hate the book completely. To echo the comments of another goodreads member, Grisham should've stuck to writing an entertaining legal thriller rather than trying to make a statement. I got his message early on. As I read closer to the end, more and more I was looking forward to seeing Carl Trudeau get his. That's what usually happens in Grisham's legal thrillers, and that's one of the reasons I enjoy them.(Ugly of me, I know. But this is why I read--so I can wish bad things on characters I don't like instead of real people!) I was so utterly disappointed in Ron Fisk. I thought he was beginning to see how he'd been manipulated, and was going to turn the tables on all of them. Boy, was I wrong, and boy, was I disappointed.
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Reading Progress

02/06/2016 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-30 of 30) (30 new)

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Diane Hi there - I just posted a very short review of the Appeal,which I just finished. Then I read your review and LOVED it - L-O-V-E :)
You hit the nail right on the head. When it ended with Ron writing his decision, albeit with his remarks, I couldn't believe it. And then to have Carl floating away to Florida on his mega boat! GAG!! Honestly, I thought he was going to have a heart attack and fall over the edge! (or was hoping for it anyway). Great review!

babyhippoface Hey, Diane~

Your heart attack idea? Love it. That was one darn frustrating read, wasn't it?

Thanks for your positive comments. Here's to hoping Grisham's next is more satisfying!

Libbeth BabyHippoFace said..."what is with the absolutely horrid neon orange color of the jacket"

Every time I pick it up I think I have it upside down as the reflection confuses me. I'm about half way through this book and have considered abandoning it but I'll press on.

babyhippoface Press on! (I want to see if you're as infuriated as I was!!)

Annie I hated the ending, too. But you know what? That's the way it happens in real life. SUCKS. So I still like the book.

babyhippoface Annie wrote: "I hated the ending, too. But you know what? That's the way it happens in real life. SUCKS. So I still like the book. "

You're right, that IS the way it happens in real life. And that's why I want my books to end "right". In Book World, endings should be more satisfying than in real life--I get enough reality from the nightly news!

I'm still a Grisham fan, but I like the endings of his earlier works better, even if they were predictable: Good Guy makes it through, Bad Guy gets it!

Jayn Emm I think the fact that this book has got you all riled up must have been John's intention. I think we had got a bit too comfy with the "Book World" and he was just trying to give us a healthy dose of reality. I loved that fact that I hated the book. It was a brilliant jaw dropper don't you think? Makes you wonder what other shockers he will fling your way next time..

babyhippoface Well, it was a shocker, that's for sure!

Donna I'm almost done with this book and it's fantastic, as are all of Grisham's books. babyhippoface, the moral of the story is "That's Life!" What do you think the people who were hurt from the BP explosion last year are going through? Deaths, injuries, something you've never experienced. I know I don't want to.

babyhippoface Donna, I'm sure you're right, that those people are struggling with difficulties. But this is fiction. Grisham can end it any way he wants. He's the author, he gets to do that. And it's still well-written and compelling, as I mentioned. But that doesn't mean I have to like it. :)

Donna Very true, baby! I did work in County court--on civil cases and civil trials, not criminal--Nothing ends, even in real life, the way we'd like. Sometimes you'd like to just shake the lawyers, other times the people for their stupidity--just to get them to shape up, at least!! Oh well.

Have you ever sat in on a hearing or trial? As a taxpayer, you know it is your entitlement to see what goes on there. Only thing is you can't say anything in court (I wanted to MANY times!!).

babyhippoface No, Donna, I've never sat in on a hearing or trial, and I have never been called for jury duty, either. I do think it would be interesting. Frustrating, too, I'll bet.

Donna Very frustrating!!

And---knock on wood--I've never been called for Jury Duty, either! :D

Donna babyhippoface--finished the book. I liked the book but was disappointed in the ending. Won't stop me from reading Grisham, though!

message 15: by babyhippoface (last edited Aug 23, 2013 07:08AM) (new) - rated it 2 stars

babyhippoface That's exactly how I feel, Donna. I have been disappointed in a few of his books, most notably this one, but also Ford County and his Theo Boone books for kids. Still, I enjoy a good courtroom drama, and I really like Grisham's writing when he just tells a great story rather than trying to preach a sermon. So I keep reading. :)

Donna babyhippoface wrote: "That's exactly how I feel, Donna. I have disappointed in a few of his books, most notably this one, but also Ford County and his Theo Boone books for kids. Still, I enjoy a good courtroom drama, an..."

exactly how I feel! Sometimes, it's the moral of the story and kind of reading between the lines. He's my favorite lawyer!

message 17: by Mona (new) - rated it 4 stars

Mona I totally agree (please read my comments). I wanted this obscenely greedy Trudeau to suffer the way he made all those poor bastards suffer. And what's the point of having Ron Fisk go through the agony of watching his son after his accident? I will never know.

babyhippoface You and me, both, Mona....

Kimberly Andrea I thought I was the only one who found the ending to be distasteful. As compelling as the book was, the endng should have been different but the out come is what happens in real life. I still liked the book.

message 20: by Miriam (new)

Miriam Stone I don't want the outcome to be as it would be in real life!! We know real life! Not what John Grisham books are for! Grr! I got my son to read it (him having not read any Grisham before). I hope it doesn't put him off!! I said, 'hang on - this doesn't usually happen? In some clever way, the bad guy always gets his comeuppance'. How wrong I was... Love the heart attack idea! Rewrite, rewrite!

babyhippoface Miriam, I'm with you. I guess I just like a happy ending. Or at least not horrendous one. It's certainly the prerogative of Grisham or any other author to write any ending he wants to write, and just because it's an unpopular ending doesn't mean it isn't well written. But I still don't have to like it! :)

Belinda I totally agree with babyhippoface,s comment except the color of the jacket I read it on my kindle. The ending stunk. I read for enjoyment and like it when bad guys get their due.

babyhippoface Yeah, Belinda! We can form a club! ;)

message 24: by Elaine (new)

Elaine Jackson Just finished and feel quite angry. Book was well written but did not have the usual satisfaction when I ffinished.I want to push Carl Trudeau off his boat!

Kerri The book was well written, however, I am quite confused as to the extreme power the Supreme Court had. I understand that their rulings have impact on real life and I am disappointed in the character Ron Fisk who was a pawn in a game bigger than he and once he figured this out he still failed to do the right hung. Makes you see his failure to do what's right even after his son suffered so greatly makes you realize everyone can be bought. This was Grisham's lesson that judiciary positions need to be appointed in a different manner so justice cannot be bought.

babyhippoface yes, Kerri, I enjoy Grisham's writing, but I'm getting tired of him trying to"preach to me". "/

Kerri Babyhippoface ... I can appreciate that. I agree most people don't read this author for political viewpoints, however, I believe that there is a bit of politics in each and every book he writes :-) thanks for your review and giving me the push to respond!

message 29: by Moosomething (new) - added it

Moosomething Feeling the same way. I love his style of writing but the book ended way too soon and not how I wanted it to.

Karen Pennachi Horrible ending. Horrible. Soooo disappointing!!!!

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