"Theodore Boone, Kid Lawyer," John Grisham's first young adult novel, follows Theo Boone, a 13-year-old boy who decides to become a trial lawyer during the biggest murder trial in his town's history. While conducting his own investigation, he uncovers a potential witness and ends up in a killer's crosshairs.
With both of his parents busy with their law practices, Theo spends most of his downtime in courtrooms watching lawyers examine witnesses and judges deciding a person's innocence or guilt. His classmates go to him for legal advice, and after organizing a class trip to watch the proceedings during a murder trial, he decides to look further into the case.
A classmate introduces Theo to a potential witness whose testimony could mean the difference between a conviction and letting a murderer walk free. Though he promises to keep this witness's identity and what he knows secret, Theo wonders if maybe he should come forward himself and let his friend Judge Gantry, who presides over the case, know what he knows. Theo knows that doing so would break several legal rules and might cause his friend to recluse himself, but he also knows that keeping his secret might be a miscarriage of justice.
It's a race against time, as prosecutor and defense attorney prepare and give their closing arguments, with Theo's future as a lawyer, and the murderer's fate, hanging in the balance.