The Confession, by John Grisham.
Now we're getting somewhere, Keith thought. The burden of unconfessed sin. The shame of buried guilt. "It would be helpful if you told me about these bad things. Confession is the best place to start."
"And this is confidential?"
"For the most part, yes, but there are exceptions."
"If you confide in me and I believe you're a danger to yourself or to someone else, then the confidentiality is waived. I can take reasonable steps to protect you or the other person. In other words, I can go get help."
"Look, Pastor, I've done some terrible things, but this one has nagged at me for many years now. I gotta talk to someone, and I got no place else to go. If I told you about a terrible crime that I committed years ago, you can't tell anyone?"
John Grisham is one of my favorite storytellers, especially for legal thrillers, and he does not disappoint in this novel. I can definitely see this being made into a movie, as the writing is so taut and exciting.
Travis Boyette just got out of jail and is living in a halfway house in Kansas. He has an inoperable brain tumor and expects to die within the year. Back in 1998, nine years ago, he killed and raped a girl in Texas, and the wrong man was arrested for the crime, to which the man confessed. Now, that man - Donte Drumm - is awaiting his execution on death row in a few days. Travis goes to a pastor, Keith, in Kansas, and confesses this to him, and later Keith agrees to drive him to Texas - technically breaking Travis's parole conditions - so he can confess and try to stop the execution.
As with all of John Grisham's books, this one was very well done, and you can tell that he used to be a lawyer because of all the technical terms and knowledge displayed in the book. Although the book is a length 400 pages or so, I flew through it in about two days, because it was so good, and I hope that they DO option it as a movie sometime soon.
4.5 stars out of 5.