is a 1995
novel by John Grisham
. It differs from most of his other novels in that it is written almost completely in the simple present tense.
Rudy Baylor is about to graduate from Memphis State Law School
. He secures a position with a Memphis
law firm, which he then loses when the firm is bought up by another, larger firm. As one of the few members of his class without a job lined up, Rudy is forced to apply for part-time and poorly-paid law positions. Desperate for a job, he reluctantly allows "Prince" Thomas, the crooked owner of a sleazy bar where he has been working part-time, to introduce him to J. Lyman "Bruiser" Stone, a ruthless but successful ambulance chaser
, who makes him an associate. To earn his fee, Rudy is required to hunt for potential clients at the local hospital, where he must pick up injury cases and sign them on. He is introduced to Deck Shifflet, a less-than-ethical former insurance assessor who received a law degree but is not a member of the bar because he has failed to pass the Bar examination
Rudy manages to sign up two clients One is an old woman who becomes his new landlady after he is evicted from his former home, who needs a will written. The other is a poor family, Dot and Buddy Black, whom he met through a class visit to a community center. Their insurance bad faith
case could be worth several million dollars in damages. With Stone's firm about to be raided by the police and the......