I just finished The Associate, the first John Grisham book I’d read in several years. I mentioned earlier that I would consider The Testament an example of Christian fiction, and now I’m wondering whether more of his books should fall into that genre, too.
The Associate isn’t a particularly notable book overall, but it does include one of the best treatments of a conversion to Christianity I’ve seen in any novel. The characters speak and act naturally, the conversion is a vital part of the plot (not just something tacked on to make the book acceptable to the Christian crowd), and the resulting life change makes a realistic difference in the outcome of the book. The conversion matters, but it doesn’t solve everyone’s problems (quite the contrary!) or cause all the characters to come flocking to Christ. Grisham has managed to accomplish what few Christian writers have been able to: making faith an integral part of the story, just as it should be in real life.