Here is the review of The Confession by John Grisham:
Travis Boyette is a murderer. In 1998, in the small East Texas city of Sloan, he abducted, raped, and strangled a popular high-school cheerleader. He buried her body so that it would never be found, then watched and waited as police and prosecutors arrested Donte Drumm, a local footballer staar with no connection to the crime. Tired, convicted and sentenced, Drumm was sent to death row: his fate has been decided.
Nine years later, Donte Drumm is four days from execution. Over 400 miles away in Kansas, Travis faces a fate of his own: an inoperable brain tumour will soon deliever the end. Reflecting on his miserable life, he decides to do what’s right. After nine years of silence he is ready to confess.
But how a guilty man convinve lawyers, judges and politicians that they are about to execute an innocent man?.
John Grisham is a master of crime writing. The Confession is an amazingly detailed and well researched suspense thriller. The cover is beautiful. Golden cover with a golden man trapped in the shadow of a running man, shown in black. This story is about a man wrongfully sentenced to death row for someone else’s crime. The cover seems apt for this concept. Atleast that’s how I have interpreted the cover’s meaning.
In the beginning, where each character is introduced to us, I felt the details were almost superfluous. But it wasn’t. Everything is written for a reason. So, though I felt the pace was slow in the beginning, it was actually the setting of the perfect foundation, because what followed was worth reading.
I have mentioned in some of my reviews before that law related jargon bores me. There are no shortage of lawyers, district attorneys, prosecutors and what not, in this book. However, the difference was, it was written in an informative way. I got to know what a man goes through before heading to execution, the protocols and even what the lethal injections do, in the final moments of the convicted man. Off topic, but it helped me understand things more when I watched Prison Break for the second time and an episode of Criminal Minds : Suspect Behaviour (Episode “Death by a Thousand Cuts”), two of my favorite shows!.
The most powerful scene in this book is where a policeman and detective elicit a forced confession out of Donte Drumm, an 18 year old who thought he was going in for routine questioning for the death of his classmate, Nicole Yarber. However, after 15 hours of forcing and threatening, an exhausted Donte confesses. The body of Nicole was not even found. All the police wanted was the case closed even if that meant charging an innocent man. Reading through those pages, I felt tensed as if I was the one being questioned over an over. It was frightening and the thought that many in this world could have suffered in this same way at the hands of corrupt officials, made my head reel..
The possibility of an innocent man getting executed for a crime he didn’t commit, even after he spent almost nine years in jail for it and the sadness his family goes through is heart wrenching. There were many times when I found tears rolling down my cheeks. By the end, I loved the book, grieved a bit, was filled with respect for a lot of characters in the book and ultimately for John Grisham. What a writer!. Just amazed by how he thinks of every single aspect of every situation and covers it in detail so that there are no questions left unanswered.
I highly recommend this book to all crime/suspense lovers. The beginning might make you put down the book couple of times but eventually, it’s worth reading.
My source : I bought a paperback version of The Confession, for AED 28 from Jashanmal Bookstores. It’s 457 pages. Click here to see what other books I have bought recently..