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Publisher's Summary

John Grisham's newest legal thriller takes you inside a law firm that shouldn't exist.

Law students Mark, Todd and Zola wanted to change the world - to make it a better place. But these days these three disillusioned friends spend a lot of time hanging out in The Rooster Bar, the place where Todd serves drinks. As third-year students, they realise they have been duped. They all borrowed heavily to attend a law school so mediocre that its graduates rarely pass the bar exam, let alone get good jobs. And when they learn that their school is one of a chain owned by a shady New York hedge-fund operator who also happens to own a bank specialising in student loans, the three realise they have been caught up in The Great Law School Scam.

So they begin plotting a way out. Maybe there's a way to escape their crushing debt, expose the bank and the scam, and make a few bucks in the process. But to do so, they have to leave law school, pretend they are qualified and go into battle with a billionaire and the FBI....

Ingenious, immersive and page-turning, The Rooster Bar is a John Grisham legal thriller bar none.

©2017 Belfry Holdings, Inc (P)2017 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

Praise for John Grisham:
"The best thriller writer alive." (Ken Follett)
"A superb, instinctive storyteller." (The Times)
"A giant of the thriller genre." (Time Out)
"John Grisham has perfected the art of cooking up convincing, fast-paced thrillers." (Telegraph)
"No one does it better than Grisham." (Daily Telegraph)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Simon
  • 10-20-17

Grisham Raises The Bar

NB This review is from the original 20th October release which was withdrawn by Audible in favour of a newer version with enhanced audio.  I cannot comment on just how "enhanced" the audio is but the original seemed fine to me.

Like many I was pretty disappointed with Grisham's previous release, Camino Island but Rooster Bar sees him returning to more familiar legal territory and things improve markedly as a result. ­­  The novel was inspired by an article of investigative journalism about student lending in the US.  Grisham once again weaves an entertaining story around legally engineered social injustice within the US.  The luckless law students entrapped by the loans system embark on some imaginative ways out of the hole that they find themselves in.  It's clever writing and displays the author's usual healthy cynicism about the American Dream.  I worried it might head towards some kind of US Robin Hood style scenario but Grisham blurs the lines between the good and bad guys to a delicious murkiness as the naiveté of the young mavericks leaves a trail of disruption in their wakes. Ari Fliakos gives his usual assured performance as the narrator and suits the material well.

This is Grisham on his home turf; street lawyers, injustice in US society and some interesting legal procedural shenanigans.  I for one am much happier with this return to familiar ground.

20 of 25 people found this review helpful

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  • Christopher
  • 12-07-17

Great yarn, could it be true.

Another great legal story and I am sure it could be reality.
Great ending and hope it lasts.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Mr
  • 12-07-17

Good but not his best

A pleasant book but not up there with his earlier work in my opinion, the performance is good and I preferred this book to the last Grisham (Camino Island) effort but I do miss the old stories, maybe it's just nostalgia.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Joan
  • 12-07-17

Did John Grisham really write this?

I have read all of his novels. This one is a real disappointment. Over written, with a meandering, confusing plot, I seriously wonder if The Rooster Bar was written by Grisham. This unbelievable story had more holes in it than barbed wire. The main characters were hard to like, and the book, although well read, was so removed from the authors usual style and standard.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 11-30-17

very slow

disappointed with this story. very slow progress with very little excitement. action starts to pick up for the last hour of the book. only finished because it was paid for. usually love Grisham stories (except gray mountain)

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Mr Logic
  • 11-29-17

Dire

Good performance but such a banal novel. Grisham no longer seems to be even trying. Used to quite enjoy his trash.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Kirstine
  • 11-13-17

Entertaining

I've read and listened to many of the author's books. Most have an honest lawyer as the hero who pits his wits against big business or fat-cat lawyers who are on the side of the bad guys. The present book is different. The lead characters are three students impoverished by huge debts run up to pay their law school fees. However, instead of being wholly sympathetic figures they become criminals embarking on a series of outlandish money-making escapades.

Unlike earlier books this is not a modern morality tale of good versus evil: more the little guys getting their own back on the system by dubious means. Despite their actions I found myself wanting them to get away with their felonies as their targets were the less admirable practitioners of the law.

A more serious side story involves the family of one of the law students highlighting the precariousness of life for illegal immigrants and what they face when deported.

Overall an entertaining novel, more humorous than earlier books.

The narrator is good

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Adam
  • 11-11-17

Not many likeable characters

A good story, a good narrator but I just couldn't like the main characters - especially the two chaps - they came across as arrogant, flippant and dishonest. (although to be fair, their 'enemies' were just as bad)....

I did stick this out until the end of the story but I think I need an anecdote now - perhaps something with a hero I can emphasise with and actually cheer for....

Oh well.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Darren Kelly
  • 11-11-17

Not up to Mr Grisham's usual compelling level.

The storyline is original but not strong enough not to leave you wondering if a better one is about to develop as new characters are introduced. It felt more akin to a few weak episodes of "Suits" than a stand alone thriller except I was far less invested in the characters.

I found the verbose repetition of the email correspondence to and from the loan officers to be a frustrating waste of time. It had no real purpose or pay off in the story and felt like padding of the duration.

If you are happy enough with a competently written yarn which you can have wash over you whilst doing something else it's ok.

If like myself you prefer a gripping story where you care what happens next and which engages you enough to give you a break from your day, this one isn't for you.

Three stars overall as there was nothing wrong with the narration and the storyline was well constructed but in the end had no teeth.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Wras
  • 11-07-17

social commentary in the form of a book.


Again a book that comes straight out of the Trump social engineering experiment in hate, division and profits before social responsibility. all the scenarios of deportation and universities for profit are all too real and not fictional in any way, as a matter of fact, Trump is fond of ICE and his university for profit; where he is being sued and paying out of court settlements.

The characters are charming enough and the story has a good plot the motivation for some of their actions did not make much sense or had any discernable logic but it still delivers a few good hour of entertainment.

3 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 10-29-17

A ripping good yarn

John Graham has lived up to his reputation and provided a great story, well told

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Russell
  • 11-02-17

Amazing!! couldnt stop listening

How good is Grisham back to his best for this one. p.s follow the money

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Skye
  • 01-06-18

Not a fan.

I like the idea of the plot but don't feel like it was done quite right. The characters were hard to root for despite that being the intention of the story....I think.
My first story from this author and unfortunately I don't think I'll try another.

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  • Joan
  • 01-03-18

Rooster Bar

Enjoyable story as long as you pay attention to the characters and where they are in the story

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  • Harry Kaplan
  • 12-20-17

Fantastic

Unable to stop listening
Brilliantly spoken and inspiring!
You will definitely enjoy, well worth the effort

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  • H. Anthony
  • 12-17-17

so so

Lost interest half way through, long winded, took too long to get to the crux of the story

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  • Andrew Parker
  • 12-11-17

Ambulance chasers

It’s an ok book
Although I struggled with the two main male characters
They were shallow
A bit dishonest
Liars and a bit self centred

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  • Michael
  • 12-06-17

Another great easy to handle story

Great narration always helps an audio book and this was no exception to that rule! A great story line that had you wondering till the very last paragraph .. easy to listen to and hard to turn off..

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  • Avril
  • 11-24-17

What a story

Loved this story, gripped from the first page. Wish I could have had more of the emotional side of the trio. How they felt leaving family and so on but maybe that me and nothing to do with the book. I know the style of books John writes.

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  • Jenny
  • 11-24-17

An addictive story...be warned!

Compelling listening to this story...am left wanting to have a sequel to further track the lives of the 3 main characters.