• The Innocent Man

  • Murder and Injustice in a Small Town (Abridged Edition)
  • By: John Grisham
  • Narrated by: Dennis Boutsikaris
  • Length: 5 hrs and 54 mins
  • 4.1 out of 5 stars (250 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Number-one New York Times best seller

John Grisham’s first work of nonfiction: a true crime story that will terrify anyone who believes in the presumption of innocence.

Soon to be a Netflix original documentary series 

“Both an American tragedy and [Grisham’s] strongest legal thriller yet, all the more gripping because it happens to be true.” (Entertainment Weekly

In the town of Ada, Oklahoma, Ron Williamson was going to be the next Mickey Mantle. But on his way to the Big Leagues, Ron stumbled, his dreams broken by drinking, drugs, and women. Then, on a winter night in 1982, not far from Ron’s home, a young cocktail waitress named Debra Sue Carter was savagely murdered. The investigation led nowhere. Until, on the flimsiest evidence, it led to Ron Williamson. The washed-up small-town hero was charged, tried, and sentenced to death - in a trial littered with lying witnesses and tainted evidence that would shatter a man’s already broken life, and let a true killer go free. 

Impeccably researched, grippingly told, filled with 11th-hour drama, this audio edition of The Innocent Man plays like an edge-of-your-seat legal thriller. It is a book no American can afford to miss. 

“Grisham has crafted a legal thriller every bit as suspenseful and fast-paced as his best-selling fiction.” (The Boston Globe)

“A gritty, harrowing true-crime story.” (Time)

“A triumph.” (The Seattle Times)

Please note: This is the abridged edition. An unabridged version is also available.

Listen to John Grisham's interview with Charlie Rose.
©2006 Belfry Holdings, Inc (P)2006 Random House, Inc.

What listeners say about The Innocent Man

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Better Than His Great Fiction

John Grisham has told a shocking tale in a most gripping manner in this book. As great as his fiction has been, this book sets a new mark for his skills as a writer. I listened to the book while exercising and I did not miss an exercise session while moving through The Innocent Man because I could not wait to learn the next twist and turn in this convoluted account of misjustice. Buy it!

10 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

A return to the old Grisham

While I am not a fan of some of John Grisham's latest books, Skipping Christmas and the Painted House. This book is a return, for me, to some of his more compelling writing the Last Juror or The Testament.

While some of the people mentioned in the book have out right condemned Grisham for his telling of the facts - it i certain that two innocent men we imprisoned wrongly while the real killer walked free.

A truly enjoyable listen.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Engaging

A very engaging story of a human tradgey that should never have happened - well written by an excellent author of fiction turned novelist. The book changed my opinion of the Innocence Project and the people they take on as clients.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

Innocent Man

compelling but gut-renching - how systems are developed to provide human and civil rights, yet small groups of threatened, conniving individuals are allowed to circumvent those systems as an escape from their own inadequacies as human beings!!

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Fiction versus Non-fiction

As is quoted in this well written piece..."The only difference between fiction and non-fiction is fiction must be plausible."

This story is so amazing that if taken to an editor and billed as the latest novel, the editor would pass saying it just isn't believable. This is an entertaining and enjoyable read.

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars

Eye opening! Great narration!

Very eye opening at the faults of our judicial system. Being a nurse and a Jesus follower, I enjoyed the details of the psych disorders and the message at the end. We are set free! The narration was perfect and held my attention. Highly recommend! Thank you!

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars

Amazing story!! Listened for hours at a time

Narration was spot on!! Truth is stranger than fiction
The tragedy and dishonesty is disturbing

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Wow. A documentary

As I listened I started think this seems sore like a documentary than a novel. I grabbed this book because I enjoy the stories Grisham tells not realizing it cover a true story.

Well, it’s a great story told by a master storyteller

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Great story.

Great book! I definitely would recommend this book, great for law class and others classes.

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Interesting case

The narrator was very clear and the case was interesting for my criminal justice course.