It is very obvious that John Grisham doesn't like large law firms, in fact I think he despises them. The Associate provides him with a long vehicle for airing his grievances. I have to wonder where he first worked after law school and just how bad it was for him. It seems as if the plot was secondary to the chance to gripe about how associates are used and made to work mercilessly long hours. It reminded me of my husband's years at a large CPA firm.
Kyle is a first-year associate, just out of Yale, editor of the law review and with a bright future ahead of him. Actually, his first choice was to work at a non-profit somewhere but he was "recruited", thanks to a compromising video, to work at the largest firm in New York, and while there to steal secrets for some nefarious types. I don't want to spoil things by talking about how he deals with things but it is a fun, albeit completely implausible, read.
The language wasn't too bad, cleaner than the other books I have read by him. There were still plenty of swear words but I don't recall a single f-word. What made me squeamish was the discussion of the rape seen on the video used to blackmail Kyle. It was a bit too graphic for me to feel comfortable enough for my 16 year old daughter to read it. I am probably erring on the side of caution, and I waffled about this for awhile, but I would have to rate it R just for the rape and discussion of it. If it hadn't been for the rape, I think I would have rated it PG-13.
I am still waffling and had to come back and change this. It is so much cleaner-not that it's clean at all but the other books are so bad-than some of the books I have read since that I decided it shouldn't be in the same category. Rated PG-16 but if you let your teen read it please sit down and have a discussion about the rape. It still makes me squeamish and I would LOVE to hear what someone else thinks about this!