I read a lot of John Grisham novels. This is the latest one that I have read. Bought 4 weeks ago, I read it slowly and took my time. It’s 2010’s The Confession which is about a young man false accused of raping and killing his high school classmate. Nicole Yarber went missing in 1998 a teenage girl and high school student in Slone, Texas. Under duress Donte gives a fake confession, which is all the cops seem to need to put him away. A false eye witness by Nicole’s on & off jealous boyfriend is another nail in the coffin for Drumm. The actual killer, a serial rapist and multiple offender for other crimes, Travis Boyette watches by as the young African-American man, Donte Drumm, is picked up by the cops and interrogated harshly.
Boyette had raped Nicole multiple times, killed her and buried her in Missouri. Donte’s lawyer Robbie Flak fights hard for his client but Donte is convicted and sentenced to death. He has been on death row for nine years when the story takes place. While Drumm serves his prison sentence, Flak fights his case while Black Americans protest his false conviction, creating a law and order situation. While the years passed Boyette develops a tumour in his brain that seems to be inoperable and his health falters. He approaches Kansas priest Reverend Keith Schroeder and confesses his sin. Boyette says that he doesn’t want to come clean to the public but he doesn’t want an innocent man to get killed for his crime. It takes a lot of convincing but Schroeder takes the dying man takes him to Slone.
Despite their adventure and Boyette speaking to tv journalists and declaring himself as the real killer, the execution proceeds on and Drumm is executed by lethal injection. Boyette then reveals the resting place of Nikki and DNA samples show signs of rape and assault on her body. She finally comes home and is given a proper burial as does Donte, where at the funeral his lawyer is able to announce the proof of his innocence. In the aftermath, it turns out that Travis’s tumor is not malignant and the cane is there for protection in his half-way house. His seizures however, and intense headaches, are real. He evades the cops and goes back to finding a victim to rape – but he is beaten by a rescuer and arrested. Keith takes some flack for taking Boyette to Texas and he and his his wife leave Kansas for Texas where he takes up a position in a church there.
Really good novel, drags in some places especially when the riots and fights in Slone are described but otherwise I recommend that you pick it up and have a good read.