John Grisham is a master of courtroom drama. Now he has turned his attention to writing for the younger crowd and the result is worth a look. Theodore Boone is a new series for Grades 5 – 8 that is certain to find an audience with those who want an updated Hardy Boys or Nancy Drew. Book 1 of the series is Kid Lawyer.
Theo Boone, the title character, is an endearing 13 year-old. The son of lawyers, he knows his way around the legal system, is friends with police officers and judges, and has no problem dispensing legal advice to friends. However, Theo is suddenly in over his head when he is handed evidence that is crucial in the town’s sensational murder trial.
I think there is a lot of potential for this series. Much of this first novel is spent introducing characters and explaining legal processes; it’s American, but I don’t think the basics of it are that different from our own. Besides legalities, there are also moral and ethical dilemmas which provide drama and interest. In Kid Lawyer, Grisham is laying the groundwork for the series, and like his adult novels, I expect the series will provide many hours of reading enjoyment.