John Grisham

What Amazon’s Bestsellers Say About American Culture in 2014

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Amazon’s list of its best-selling books in 2014 reveals an American culture gritting its teeth, biding its time, immersing itself in serial narratives. If Amazon’s 2013 list aired out the dying gasp of a “can-do” spirit — with books like (#1) Tom Rath’s Strength Finder, (#2) Sheryl Sandberg’s Lean In, and (#17) Gary D. Chapman’s The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love That Lasts  — the 2014 list bails on that ethos entirely. Many of the basic social, cultural, and economic pieties that have guided Americans into and through the 21st century are missing from the best-selling books of 2014.
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Hey, John Grisham: Looking at Child Pornography Is Not a Victimless Crime

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We nearly got through an entire week without a privileged old asshole making a fool of himself, but then John Grisham came along and spoiled everything. Specifically, he gave an interview to the Daily Telegraph in England, wherein he took the opportunity to expound on how he thinks it’s all wrong to lock up old white men who just happen to enjoy watching some child pornography when they get home drunk. He complained that, “We have prisons now filled with guys my age. Sixty-year-old white men in prison who’ve never harmed anybody, would never touch a child,” and cited the example of a friend who “went to a website… labeled, 16-year-old wannabe hookers, or something… [and] downloaded some stuff. It was 16-year-old girls who looked 30. You know, they were all dressed up and whatever. He shouldn’t have done it, it was stupid. But it wasn’t 10-year-old boys and he didn’t touch anything… [But] he went to prison for three years.” This, according to John Grisham, is a Bad Thing. Dear god. Where to begin?
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Who Cares If a Great Movie Like ‘The Shining’ Is a Bad Adaptation?

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Well, here we go again. Stephen King recently published Doctor Sleep, the sequel to The Shining, and so we’re again asking what he thought of Stanley Kubrick’s film adaptation of the original book. And the answer, as ever, is not much. He’s voiced these objections before, in previous interviews and essays; he disliked Kubrick’s take on the property so much, in fact, that he co-produced and wrote a mini-series “do over” in 1997. (It was not well regarded.) This latest round of niggling was swiftly shot down by Kubrick defenders as the carping of a jealous, inferior artist; over at Salon, Laura Miller fires back, arguing that King’s claims of misinterpretation are correct. Almost point for point, she’s right — Kubrick’s film is not a good adaptation of King’s work. But it’s also a great film, so the quality of the adaptation is patently irrelevant.
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John Grisham Film Adaptations, Ranked From Worst to Best

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The big-screen version of The Firm, the first of John Grisham’s novels to be adapted for film, was released 20 years ago this week. The movie was a major success both critically and commercially, and its popularity not only made John Grisham a household name, it also ushered in the era of legal thrillers. Grisham was the king of the genre, and his first seven novels were all made into movies before the legal thriller went out of fashion. To celebrate, here’s a ranking of the eight films adapted from Grisham’s books (minus the TV adaptation of A Painted House, a coming-of-age drama, and Christmas With the Kranks — for obvious reasons).
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10 Authors Who Loved the Film Adaptations of Their Books

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Last week, we had a good laugh at the recently uncovered notes from the producers of Blade Runner, who seemed united in their hatred for the “deadly dull” sci-fi noir that would prove one of the most influential movies of the ‘80s. But it’s important to remember that some of those casually involved in the production actually liked it quite a bit — particularly Philip K. Dick, whose book Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? was the basis of Ridley Scott’s film. And while there’s a long (and enjoyable) history of authors loathing what Hollywood does to their books, there are a few examples of writers who are utterly delighted with their page-to-film adaptations. We’ve collected them for you after the jump.
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