By Reviewer Carol
Theodore Boone, Kid Lawyer
Author: John Grisham
Primary Audience/age group: 10-16 years
# Of pages: 263
Publisher: Dutton Children’s Books
Year of Release: 2010
Part of a Series? Yes, 1 of ?
Rating: 4 (View Scale)
Taken from the review published in the Christian Library Journal, August 2010.
Description: Theodore Boone is the 13 year old son of lawyer parents. Theodore (or Theo as he is sometimes called) knows every judge, police officer, and court clerk in town. He dreams of being a trial lawyer someday. Theo finds himself unexpectedly in the middle of a sensational murder trial, where he is the only one who knows the truth about a key witness. Without that witness, the killer will go free. But there are complications to bringing that witness to court.
In the meantime, others – friends, classmates, even adults Theo knows – come to him for legal advice and referrals because of his in-depth knowledge about the law and his connections to other lawyers. One is his friend since kindergarten whose divorcing parents are fighting over her custody; another had a brother who was picked up for drug possession, and another whose house was being foreclosed and the family was facing eviction.
Review: Grisham, a well-known author in legal mysteries, has crafted a plot and characters that draw in the reader. Theo is a likeable kid who wants to see justice served and the truth known. He knows the limits and boundaries of the law.
Readers will enjoy the twists and turns, as they try to solve the mystery in this legal thriller. Plot twists and plenty of action make this an excellent choice for readers in fifth grade and up.
Rating: 4 due to mention of drug use by the brother of a friend and mild violence (the murder),
Positive: Theo wants to help his friends and stays within the law to do so. He struggles with protecting the identity of a witness, knowing if the witness testifies, the witness is at risk for deportation. He wants to see justice done and the truth to prevail. He knows that if the witness doesn’t testify, a killer will go free.
Spiritual Elements: None
Violence: None – there is a murder but it is only mentioned, not described in detail.
Sexual Content: None
Other: Theodore Boone, kid lawyer is the first work by well-known author John Grisham into young adult literature. It is a wonderful legal drama for younger readers with the characteristics of his other works: a legal thriller with suspense told by a skilled storyteller
Recommendation: Recommended for 10-16 years old. Boys and girls should like this new mystery series!