Bibliophilia: the reading list for book lovers.
This week, it’s all about legal books and the law but it’s not all dry learning.
Bibliophilia is a weekly post of recommended reading for law students and lawyers. The list will comprise both fiction and non-fiction books with as much variety as possible. We’re also happy to take reader submissions from you so get reading!
Title: The Bramble Bush: On Our Law And Its Study
Author: Karl Nickerson Llewellyn
Genre: Non-fiction, law, legal studies, lecture
“Written over 80 years ago, but highly relevant today, The Bramble Bush remains one of the books most recommended for students to read when considering law school, just before beginning its study, or early in the first semester….Llewellyn’s pointed and clear explanations of case briefing before class, visualization of case facts, active learning in class, the use of precedent, exam formats, and the limits of logic have proved timeless and highly practical….the book remains, by all accounts, targeted to the way ‘thinking like a lawyer’ continues in the modern law school.” [source]
Title: Eve Was Framed
Author: Helena Kennedy
Genre: Non-fiction, law, feminism, politics
“Eve Was Framed offers an impassioned, personal critique of the British legal system. Helena Kennedy focuses on the treatment of women in our courts – at the prejudices of judges, the misconceptions of jurors, the labyrinths of court procedures and the influence of the media. But the inequities she uncovers could apply equally to any disadvantaged group – to those whose cases are subtly affected by race, class poverty or politics, or who are burdened, even before they appear in court, by misleading stereotypes.” [source]
What started as a Tumblr blog honouring the famous Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg quickly turned into a book.
“….“Notorious RBG” may be a playful project, but it asks to be read seriously. It’s an artisanal hagiography, a frank and admiring piece of fan nonfiction…It’s an Honest Abe tale for the 20-something set….There is much about Justice Ginsburg that remains enigmatic. The achievement of “Notorious RBG” is that the authors make this unassuming, most studious woman come pulsing to life. A colleague of the justice’s once said, “The anecdote that describes her best is that there are no anecdotes.” In this way, Justice Ginsburg is a bit like the Mona Lisa, whose likeness has also launched a thousand fanciful appropriations. To be a scrim for the world’s projections, it helps to be a little hard to read.” [source]
Title: The Professor
Author: Robert Bailey
Genre: Fiction, thriller
“Thomas Jackson McMurtrie is a living legend scorned. Forty years ago, he gave up a promising career as a trial lawyer to become a law professor at the University of Alabama at the request of his mentor, Alabama football Coach, Paul “Bear” Bryant. Now Tom is forced into retirement, betrayed by both a powerful colleague and his own failing health.
Meanwhile the young family of one of his oldest friends is killed in a tragic road collision. Believing his career is over, Tom refers the case to a brilliant, yet beleaguered, former student, who begins to uncover the truth behind the tragedy, buried in a tangled web of arson, bribery and greed.
But as the eve of trial approaches, the young attorney’s case begins to unravel. In over his head and at the end of his rope, he realises there’s only one man who can help…” [source]
Title: Defending Jacob
Author: William Landay
Genre: Fiction, mystery, thriller, courtroom drama, crime
“At home, Andy Barber is a quiet family man, a devoted husband and father. At work, he is a trusted senior prosecutor, the District Attorney’s right hand and master trial lawyer…in an unexpected swerve, Barber’s own 14-year-old son, Jacob, is accused of the murder. The boy insists he is innocent, and Barber rallies to his son’s defense — as any father would, he thinks, as any father must. But defending Jacob exacts a terrible price….Barber’s marriage begins to crumble as his beloved wife Laurie buckles under the relentless pressure of suspicion. Finally, as Jacob’s trial intensifies, Barber faces a trial of his own, in which he is forced to confront his own secret history, a past he thought he’d buried long ago.” [source]
Title: The Burden Of Proof
Author: Scott Turow
Genre: Fiction, mystery, legal thriller
Late one spring afternoon, Alejandro “Sandy” Stem, the leading defense attorney in the midsized Midwestern city where he lives, comes ‘home from a business trip to find that Clara, his wife of thirty years, has committed suicide….He is overwhelmed by Clara’s death, and as he tries to come to terms with it, he is forced to confront all he truly does not know about his life, including his children. Even in his mourning, Stern is drawn back to the law as the defender of Dixon Hartnell, who is the target of an increasingly complex investigation by a federal grand jury.” [source]
Title: High Crimes
Author: Joseph Finder
Genre: Fiction, mystery, legal thriller
“Claire Heller Chapman has the perfect life. She’s a Harvard law professor and a high-profile criminal defense attorney known for taking on—and winning—tough cases. But one day this perfect life is shattered when her husband Tom Chapman is suddenly arrested by a team of government agents and accused of a brutal crime he insists he didn’t commit. As Claire finds herself drawn closer into a web of duplicity and shadowy figures, she discovers that her husband is not who he says he is…that he once had a different name…even a different face….” [source]