As 2019 comes to a close, let’s look at stories from the law over the year (or two) past that we loved here at Legal Brew.
By Kimberley Motley
Think that you can only practise law in the jurisdiction you trained in?
Kimberley is an American lawyer with a passion for advocacy. Her book challenges our perception of what we think is possible. With gutsy moves and incredible courage, Kimberley takes us on a journey on how it’s like to practice law in Afghanistan.
I was such a fan of Lawless, that I wrote a review earlier this year—check it out!
#2. Doing Justice
By Preet Bharara
Preet was the former US Attorney for the Southern District of New York, nicknamed a “crusader” prosecutor and “Sheriff of Wall Street”.
Doing Justice is a cracker of a book and one of the few written by an authoritative source. Preet gives us a stunning peek into the world of crime—from mafia to multi-million-dollar fraud to international crime. But he also understands the importance of balancing the toughness of a prosecutor with compassion for fellow humans.
He also has much to say about the current state of global politics:
“It turns out that the law has something to teach us about truth, dignity, and justice. About how to resolve disagreements and disputes–with reason and evidence rather than taunts and character assassination. Much of what passes for argument in the public square these days would be laughed out of court. Politicians and television talking heads would be disbarred for perversions of truth and outright lies. As someone recently put it, federal court is not Twitter.
Many people find this moment in America alarming. There is rightfully a sense of urgency. But amid all that urgency, it is also vital to take a deep breath, to take a step back, to try to understand how justice is supposed to be accomplished. Then study the contrast between the bombast and anger versus the calm thought process. The education is in that contrast.”
#3. Eggshell Skull
By Bri Lee
Bri was a former judge’s associate at the Queensland District Court and daughter of a police officer. She cleverly dissects her journey in the law, both as a bystander and as someone personally affected by a sexual crime. With unique insight, she confronts her past and deficiencies of the legal system. A must-read for anyone who cares about making our legal system more just.
#4. Breaking Badly
By Georgie Dent
Georgie presents a highly personalised account of life before, during and after the law—and how it’s like to feel like a square peg in a round hole. A brave story about her transition from law to journalism, as well as dealing with perfectionism, mental illness, and recovery. An important story for our time. All lawyers should read this and know that they are not alone.
By The Secret Barrister
Hailing from the UK, The Secret Barrister takes us on a romp through the English criminal legal system and its many failings. Humorous at times, but with serious undertones—The Secret Barrister highlights the importance of criminal law as a foundation for a functioning society.