The Confession by John Grisham
A Novel

57%

18 Critic Reviews

...do not buy John Grisham novels for poetry or character development.
-Globe and Mail

Synopsis

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

BONUS: This edition contains excerpts from John Grisham's The Litigators and Calico Joe.

An innocent man is about to be executed.
Only a guilty man can save him.
 
In 1998, in the small East Texas city of Sloan, Travis Boyette abducted, raped, and strangled a popular high school cheerleader. He buried her body so that it would never be found, then watched in amazement as police and prosecutors arrested and convicted Donté Drumm, a local football star, and marched him off to death row.
Now nine years have passed. Travis has just been paroled in Kansas for a different crime; Donté is four days away from his execution. Travis suffers from an inoperable brain tumor. For the first time in his miserable life, he decides to do what’s right and confess. But how can a guilty man convince lawyers, judges, and politicians that they’re about to execute an innocent man?
 

About John Grisham

See more books from this Author
Since first publishing A Time to Kill in 1988, Grisham has written one novel a year (his other books are The Firm, The Pelican Brief, The Client, The Chamber, The Rainmaker, The Runaway Jury, The Partner, The Street Lawyer, The Testament, The Brethren, A Painted House, Skipping Christmas, The Summons, The King of Torts, Bleachers, The Last Juror, and The Broker) and all of them have become international bestsellers. The Innocent Man (October 2006) marks his first foray into non-fiction. Grisham lives with his wife Renee and their two children Ty and Shea. The family splits their time between their Victorian home on a farm in Mississippi and a plantation near Charlottesville, VA.
 
Published October 26, 2010 by Dell. 434 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction, Political & Social Sciences, Horror, Crime. Fiction
Bestseller Status:
icon6
Peak Rank on Feb 13 2011
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Weeks as Bestseller
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Critic reviews for The Confession
All: 18 | Positive: 10 | Negative: 8

Examiner

Above average
on Mar 21 2011

This book would have been a much better read had the characters been more well-rounded and not so predictable.

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Book Reporter

Good
on Oct 26 2010

John Grisham is to be applauded for accomplishing a difficult task. Many will read THE CONFESSION and surely ask questions about the death penalty...

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Globe and Mail

Below average
on Nov 05 2010

...do not buy John Grisham novels for poetry or character development.

Read Full Review of The Confession : A Novel | See more reviews from Globe and Mail

AV Club

Above average
Reviewed by Zack Handlen on Nov 11 2010

Grisham uses his talent for crafting compelling narratives to pull readers in, and once he has their attention, he lays out the flaws and inadequacies of a process that facilitates government-sanctioned murder. The Confession makes for an adequate novel...

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LA Times

Above average
Reviewed by Chris Erskine on Nov 11 2010

As always, the book starts fast and finishes faster, though there are those who claim Grisham's beginnings are always better than his endings. I see that, but this one wraps up nicely.

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The Washington Post

Good
Reviewed by Maureen Corrigan on Oct 26 2010

There are plenty of sickening twists and turns to come. It's enough to say that Grisham doesn't spare his readers or himself from gruesome experiences or hard questions.

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Christian Science Monitor

Good
on Dec 13 2010

...Grisham’s entertaining novels are a hard habit to break.

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USA Today

Good
Reviewed by Carol Memmott on Mar 01 2011

Death penalty proponents might not rush to buy this book. It's a no-apologies, flagrantly one-sided story that would only annoy the heck out of them. But Grisham is the master of the legal thriller. Readers who share his views as well as those sitting on the fence will find much to love and lament in the tragic story of Dont Drumm.

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Huffington Post

Below average
on Nov 20 2012

...the plain truth is that The Confession is a terrible book. It should never have been published, let alone stacked in multiple zillions of copies at every airport bookshop in the world...

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Express

Good
on Oct 29 2010

...here is the usual storytelling muscle to match the authorial anger that kick-started the novel.

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Deseret News

Good
on Nov 13 2010

..."The Confession" is a driving novel that lives up to the hype preceding its release.

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About.com Bestsellers

Good
Reviewed by Bess Newman on Feb 01 2016

Grisham's latest novel tackles a serious subject matter from an earnest perspective, with plenty of detail on legal technicalities, prison reality and social issues.

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About.com Bestsellers

Below average

...the brisk pacing and sharp characters that Grisham is known for are absent...

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MostlyFiction Book Reviews

Above average
Reviewed by Eleanor Bukowsky on Jan 09 2011

Grisham is a savvy writer who knows how to spin an involving tale. His brisk dialogue, sardonic humor, and lively characters effortlessly hold our attention. Unfortunately, the book is a bit too long and, in addition, the author is heavy-handed in his depiction of certain cops, prosecutors, and judges as arrogant, corrupt, and self-serving

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Spinetingler Magazine

Below average
Reviewed by Theodore Feit on May 10 2011

All this is not to take away from Mr. Grisham’s ability to tell a tale and write it well. But, unfortunately, over-all, at least to this reader, he should have relied more on his ability as a novelist, than as an advocate for a cause.

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Think Progress

Below average
on Nov 09 2011

...we’re made to listen more than we’re made to feel. Grisham’s outlined a critical problem for advocates for the abolition of the death penalty, but it doesn’t leave us with much in the way of solutions.

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Helium

Below average
Reviewed by John Roberts on Jun 17 2011

The message of "The Confession" is completely undermined by the same old plot of an African-American male accused of killing a white girl...In Grisham's and the liberal viewpoint, only African-Americans are railroaded innocents who should be exempt from execution.

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Teen Ink

Good
Reviewed by bubblesrfun on Mar 20 2014

Another mind-blowing hit by Grisham! The Confession is an enthralling story of Travis Boyette and Keith Schroeder and their race against time...

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Reader Rating for The Confession
73%

An aggregated and normalized score based on 4234 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes


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