Tuesday, October 10, 2023

The Exchange

The Exchange: After The Firm by John Grisham
10/17/23;352 pages
Knopf Doubleday
The Firm series #2

The Exchange: After The Firm by John Grisham is a highly recommended legal thriller which takes place fifteen years after The Firm. Don't worry if you haven't read The Firm before reading The Exchange. This second novel can be read as a stand-alone where characters Mitch and Abby McDeere return.

Mitch and Abby now live in NYC with their two sons. Mitch is a partner at Scully & Pershing, an international law firm with 31 locations across the globe and Abby is a cookbook editor. Mitch travels to Rome to take over a case for Luca Sandroni, a Scully & Pershing partner in Rome who’s dying of pancreatic cancer. Sandroni's case involves a Turkish construction company, Lannak, that is suing the government of Libya for a huge unpaid debt on a construction project. Sandroni asks Mitch to have his daughter, Giovanna, assist in the case. Giovanna is an associate at the London office of Scully & Pershing. This is the start of an international plot of worldwide intrigue and perhaps even danger to Mitch's family.

This is another action-packed, globe-trotting legal thriller for Grisham. It is best to approach The Exchange as a stand-alone novel that simply shares characters from a previous novel rather than feel disappointed that the connection to the The Firm isn't stronger. It is a compelling, suspenseful novel that will hold your attention throughout if you don't set your expectations to a repeat of any previous works. There are only a few courtroom scenes as most of the novel consists of negotiations and travel.

Both Mitch and Abby are fully realized, sympathetic characters. They share the narrative with a lot of other secondary characters, who were all as developed as they needed to be. Honestly, the pleasure of reading The Exchange is in the drama, the negotiations, and international intrigue. The ending leaves room open for another sequel.

Disclosure: My review copy was courtesy of Knopf Doubleday via NetGalley.

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