After graduating from law school in 1981, John Grisham went on to practice law for nearly a decade, specialising in criminal defence and personal injury litigation. One day, he overheard the harrowing testimony of a twelve-year-old rape victim and was inspired to start a novel exploring what would have happened if the girl’s father had murdered her assailants. Getting up at 5 a.m. every day to get in several hours of writing time before heading off to work, Grisham spent three years on A Time to Kill and finished it in 1987.
His next novel, The Firm, spent 47 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list and became the bestselling novel of 1991. Since then, he has sold over 300 million copies of his books, is a number one bestseller the world over, and has seen his work translated into 42 languages. He lives near Charlottesville, Virginia.