Realistic? Uh, no. This one was so entirely slanted, I could barely endure finishing it (just a personal weakness: I finish the ones I don't care for, because I hope for a bit of redemption).
Whenever anyone who worked for a living appeared on the scene, they virtually grew horns and became the spawn of Satan.
Example: The protagonist is walking down the street and sees a shocking headline on a newspaper. He grabs the top paper and it falls apart, scattering on the street. The newsstand attendant sternly asks, "Are you going to PAY for that?" Okay, the written word doesn't do it justice; you gotta hear this part.
A huge double standard arises with law enforcement. In one chapter, Grisham (inaccurately) portrays the brute cops as Nazis sweeping the streets of defenseless, innocent homeless. In another chapter, he slams police for failing to enforce laws against homeless sleeping in areas where they might be harmed by the elements.
Grisham's gotten lazy. He needs to do a bit of research...well-rounded research. Yes, spend some time in a homeless shelter, but spend some time in a black and white, too. Find out the whole story. I've been around the judicial system for decades, Pal, and I've seen a whole lot more charitable giving from the law enforcers than I have from defense lawyers.
He wastes his talents making social commentary instead of telling a good story. The plot is very linear and predictable, devoid of any suspence. Dreadful.
After listening to The Rainmaker, I was looking forward to check other Grisham's books. Admittedly, I was disappointed by The Street Lawyer. If it was supposed to raise your social feeling, it completely failed. Classic scheme: corporation+law firm against underdog homeless and guess who win? So predictable that the Red Robin read by 100 times is a thriller, compared to that.
"a preachy lecture" comes from an earlier review of this book, and I wish I had read the reviews instead of listening to the advice of a friend. Grisham has every right to do what he wants, but don't try to sell it as a "Grisham thriller" -- it aint. It's interesting, but poorly read, and a pointed lesson that assumes that all listeners know nothing about poverty and homelessness. Well, this listener does, and I resent a misleading publisher's characterization of the book.
Don't waste your time if you're looking for a real "Grisham".
Top excitement throgh all chapters, a must for Grisham fans.
Points a finger at social unjustice in US, which is a problem in certain areas.
Grisham can do better. I came away from this novel not caring one whit for the main character. It seems Grisham's glory days are long gone. He hasn't penned anything decent since Runaway Jury. His newest one, The Broker, is a REAL stinker.
Don't misunderstand, this book isn't terribly bad. It just could have been so much better. Grisham should get "hungry" again. He's just phoning it in and we (as book buyers) are letting him get away with it.
Simple plot. The wealthy high-achievers are all bad, and the poor street people are all victims. Anti-Republican recession mentality?