Two supreme court justices are murdered on the same day.
Many people are trying to see a connection between the two men and Tulane law student, Darcy Shaw, thinks she knows who is responsible. She researches her opinion and publishes her findings in a document called "The Pellican Brief."
She is the lover of law school professor Thomas Callahan and gives him a copy of the brief. He gives it to a friend in the FBI and soon after, Callahan is murdered and Darcy becomes a hunted person.
Grisham is an excellent story teller and master of creating suspense. The reader can empathise with Darcy since she doesn't know who she can trust and yet continues in her attempt to expose the guilty person at the risk of her life.