Mississippi College

MC School of Law Welcomes Novelist John Grisham

February 5, 2008

Best-selling author John Grisham, whose novels range from "A Time to Kill" to his latest, "The Appeal," is speaking at the Mississippi College School of Law on Wednesday Feb. 13.

Making it possible for the former Mississippi lawyer and lawmaker to address the MC legal community is his longtime friend, Rep. Bobby Moak, D-Bogue Chitto. Moak is a 1991 MC law graduate who helped promote Grisham and his works early in his career and hasn't quit.

"I'm excited that John is going to visit with us at MC with a real focus on the students and the good works the law school is performing," Moak said by phone today.

Grisham will talk about his work with the Innocence Project. It is a national effort that looks into files and cases of people who have been wrongfully imprisoned and brings that information to light.

Declared "the best-selling novelist of the 90s," by Publishers Weekly, Grisham will take time to answer questions from MC students.

Seating at the law school on East Griffith Street in downtown Jackson will be limited. Students in MC's Capital Defense Seminar will have reserved seats on the front row. He will speak in the auditorium in the MC School of Law student center. Open to the MC law community, the program begins at 6 p.m.

"I am pleased that Mr. Grisham will be speaking here," said MC law dean Jim Rosenblatt. "We are very grateful to Rep. Moak for making this opportunity possible. Mr. Grisham wants this to be a student focused event."

Grisham will be speaking on a downtown Jackson campus that's blocks away from the Capitol where he once served as a Mississippi House member from Southaven. During his days at the Capitol, Grisham also polished his new craft of writing.

Born in Jonesboro, Ark., Grisham is a 1977 graduate of Mississippi State University and a 1981 alumnus of the University of Mississippi School of Law. His family (he's the oldest of five children) settled in Southaven in 1967. He graduated from Southaven High where he was quarterback for the football team. The Mississippian remains an avid sports fan today, from college basketball to professional baseball.

In recent years, Grisham's passion for baseball was evident in his novel, "A Painted House." in 2001. He's been a big supporter of Little League baseball in both Oxford, Miss. and his present home in Charlottesville, Va. for years.

His latest book, "The Appeal," recently went on sale at bookstores everywhere and is getting rave reviews. "Grisham delivers his savviest book in years," writes reviewer Janet Maslin of The New York Times. "His extended vacation from hard-hitting fiction is over."

PHOTO: John Grisham

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