The Appeal had little appeal. The story was a fairly interesting at points, but seemingly written more like a documentary than a novel. The plot was vintage Grisham overall, but ended by fizzling out.
I am a character-driven reader of fiction, so I was disappointed. While there were certainly numerous colorful characters wrapped up in the intricate plot, none were personal. There was no Rudy like we found in The Rainmaker and no Mitch McDeere the likes of The Firm. I won’t remember any of the characters’ names in another week or so because none of them seemed to come to life at all.
I’ve always liked Grisham’s books, and I am not trying to write an overly critical review (& this is hardly a review.) However, I was disappointed in this book. The novelette which Grisham released a few months back, Playing for Pizza, had a much more developed and colorful main character, Rick Dockery.
Some aspects of the plot of The Appeal I did find intriguing:
· Critical picture painted of the church’s involvement in politics
· Grisham’s continued insistence that the church is inconsistent by being against abortion and in favor of the death penalty
· The understanding the book develops of the relationship between big money and the legal system and politics
In a funny sort of way, I can see this book being a better on the big screen than it was on the page. I think I recall that Grisham was done with allowing his books to be movietized, but I don’t think he has anything to lose with this one.