The Reckoning by John Grisham

Pete is about to commit a crime that will shake the town. It’ll leave him facing the death sentence. It’ll make his children have to face the worst social and financial issues they can possibly imagine.

Pete has shot Reverend Dexter Bell.


An unbelievable start that had me fired up to see what Grisham was going to treat me to. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a little hesitant to start this book after feeling rather disappointed in his last few books, but thankfully I was suitably intrigued by this plot.

It wasn’t a classic legal thriller, that Grisham is famous for, but there was enough court time and lawyer chat to keep me happy.

The book is split into parts to build up the background and the present story, which gave a rather unexpected and deeply moving snapshot into the Battle of Bataan. Grisham delved into the detail of the hardship, torture and all of the challenges that the American and Filipino soldiers had to go through. I was completely absorbed and blown away by the raw emotion packed into this part. But Grisham didn’t put this part in to give us a history lesson, it’s to let us know what Pete had been through before returning home, to give context.

And you know the usual phrase – you don’t find out the truth until the very end? – well I need to whip it out again for this book. Because it’s TRUE. You don’t find out why Pete murdered the Reverend until the very end few chapters! And then it all gets so heartbreakingly sad.

Cleverly concocted, thoroughly researched and deeply satisfying to read – I loved it!

The Reckoning is current out in Hardback and eBook by Hodder & Stoughton, with the paperback version coming in February.

Are you a Grisham fan? How have you felt about this book compared to his previous ones? I’d love to chat about it!

Until next time, Chloé x



  1. I loved The Firm but have been reluctant to try his others because I fear they can’t possibly be as good. But I received this for Christmas so thank you for the review – I can’t wait to try it! Evie

    Liked by 1 person

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