The Testament by John Grisham
The Testament by John Grisham
This is one of my all-time favorite books and, in all honestly, it may have just made an impression on me because of when I read it. The book was released a year before I got sober so I somehow glommed onto a paperback of it when I went to rehab (for the last time). I was reading a lot at that time and wasn't looking for ANYTHING addiction or alcoholism-related. I was looking for escape. This book made it into the mix and I'll never forget it.
Unless you've been living under a rock, you've likely heard of John Grisham and we can all probably agree that the guy can write. The Testament was actually a departure from his court room books that he became famous for. The story centers around a will that is worth 11 billion dollars. The heir is a mysterious illegitimate daughter who lives in the remote jungles of South America. She has to be "reached" and this task is handed to struggling attorney Nate O'Reilly, who is just out of rehab for the fourth time. Struggling to stay sober one day at a time, Nate sets out on an amazing journey with a cast of vivid and oftentimes very funny characters.
“Shame was an emotion he had abandoned years earlier. Addicts know no shame. You disgrace yourself so many times you become immune to it.” -John Grisham, The Testament
There is a lot about greed in this book and that's probably something that anyone in recovery can appreciate as an important subject matter. Nate brings us along for his struggles, not only with the jungle, but with his internal demons, and we get to witness his many victories and revelations. Whether you are in recovery or not, I think that this is a great book and have continued to recommend it to friends who love to read over the years. If you're up for an adventure, give The Testament a try:
The Testament: A Novel
Author: John Grisham
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#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLERIn a plush Virginia office, a rich, angry old man is furiously rewriting his will. With his death just hours away, Troy Phelan wants to send a message to his children, his ex-wives, and his minions—a message that will touch off a vicious legal battle and transform dozens of lives. Because Troy Phelan’s new will names a sole surprise heir to his eleven-billion-dollar fortune: a mysterious woman named Rachel Lane, a missionary living deep in the jungles of Brazil.Enter the lawyers. Nate O’Riley is fresh out of rehab, a disgraced corporate attorney handpicked for his last job: to find Rachel Lane at any cost. As Phelan’s family circles like vultures in D.C., Nate goes crashing through the Brazilian jungle, entering a world where money means nothing, where death is just one misstep away, and where a woman—pursued by enemies and friends alike—holds a stunning surprise of her own.
Troy Phelan hates his greedy, spoiled children. The aging multibillionaire knows that they're circling like vultures as he waits to die. Phelan's surprising last will and testament names a heretofore unknown beneficiary--a missionary living deep in the wilds of Brazil. Nate O'Riley, a lawyer fresh from his fourth stay in rehab, is sent to find her. Along the way, he learns about God and himself, and he discovers that the dangers of alcohol pale in comparison with the perils of the jungle. This abridgment, though jumpy at times, flows smoothly thanks to actor Henry Leyva's polished performance. (Running time: 6 hours, 4 cassettes) --C.B. Delaney