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John Grisham - Children's Author
Long before John Grisham's name became synonymous with the modern legal thriller, he was working 60-70 hours a week at a small law practice in Southaven, Mississippi, squeezing in time before going to the office and during courtroom breaks 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 being a professional baseball player. Realising he didn't have the right stuff for a pro career, he shifted gears and majored in accounting at Mississippi State University. After graduating from law school at Ole Miss in 1981, he went on to practice law for nearly a decade in Southaven, specialising in criminal defense and personal injury litigation. In 1983, he was elected to the state House of Representatives and served until 1990.
One day at the Dessoto County courthouse, Grisham overheard a harrowing testimony and was inspired to start a novel. Getting up at 5 a.m. every day to get in several hours of writing time before heading off to work, Grisham spent three years on A Time to Kill and finished it in 1987. Initially rejected by many publishers, it was eventually bought by Wynwood press, who gave it a modest 5,000 copy printing and published it in June 1988.
That might have put an end to Grisham's hobby. However, he had already begun his next book, and it would quickly turn that hobby into a new full-time career - and spark one of publishing's greatest success stories. The day after Grisham completed A Time to Kill, he began work on another novel, the story of a hotshot young attorney lured to an apparently perfect law firm that was not what it appeared. When he sold the film rights to The Firm to Paramount Pictures for $600,000, Grisham suddenly became a hot property among publishers and book rights were bought by Doubleday. Spending 47 weeks on The New York Times bestseller list, The Firm became the bestselling novel of 1991.
Since first publishing A Time to Kill in 1988, Grisham has written one novel a year and all of them have become international bestsellers. There are currently over 225 million John Grisham books in print worldwide, which have been translated into 29 languages. Nine of his novels have been turned into films. He has also written a series for younger readers, Theodore Boone (see below).
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, Virginia.
When he's not writing, John Grisham devotes time to charitable causes, including most recently his Rebuild The Coast Fund, which raised 8.8 million dollars for Gulf Coast relief in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. He also keeps up with his greatest passion: baseball.
Author photo © Bob Krasner
(Biography from author's website)
Featured Books, with extracts by John Grisham
June 2012 Book of the Month. Bestselling John Grisham's needle-sharp writing is brilliantly on display in this detective story centring on 13 year old Theodore Boone. The son of lawyers, Theo is an expert in how the law works. It's knowledge...
Featured in: 11+ readers | 14+ readers | Books for Boys | Books of the Month
Format: Hardback - Released: 24/05/2012
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Shortlisted for the Blue Peter Best Book of the Decade. A Lovereading4kids 'Great Read' you may have missed 2011 selection. Brimming with the intrigue and suspense that made John Grisham a number one international bestseller and the undisputed master of the legal...
Featured in: 11+ readers | Books of the Month | eBooks
Format: Paperback - Released: 03/03/2011
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