My husband always accuses me of being a book snob. And a music snob. I hate being called a snob, but I have to confess that the 2014 TBR Challenge may have proven him right.
Because with that challenge, I had all these big heavy tomes on my shelf (heavy in one way or another) that I needed to read. Even I knew that it would be Too Much, so I decided to throw in something light and easy. Something just for fun. Naturally, there isn't much on my shelf that fits that. Especially not with all this darn contemporary literary fiction.
So I grabbed this one and threw it in the mix.
That's right. The Lincoln Lawyer. The movie that I didn't watch. The book that I didn't even buy, the one that my husband read and kept telling me to read.
I always gripe at him for the fact that he doesn't ever put the law down. Why watch all those crime shows when you live it every day and know how wrong they are, and how they have given juries a false sense of how it happens and should happen? No, no, no, no, give me escape!
I don't think I've voluntarily read a lawyer book since Presumed Innocent (which I read while putting off studying for a criminal law exam, that I aced, thank you very much) or A Time to Kill (my favorite, favorite, favorite contemporary lawyer fiction), or The Firm (yeah, so not real but so fun) and the best of all time To Kill a Mockingbird, whom some argue was the best book of the 21st century (move over Ulysses, sorry Red Roof Reader I'm just reporting what they claim).
So, after the pure drudgery of slogging through Bleak House (the first on my 2014 TBR Challenge ), I decided to go for some fun. I read this way back in April, and was too stumped to write about it.
I'm still thinking about it.
Because I loved it.
I love these lawyer fiction books! Why did I quit reading them?
(Oh, yes, you are right, it didn't hurt that Mathew Himself is on the cover. Alright, alright, alright.)
We Americans have such a love / hate relationship with lawyers. Can't live with 'em. Can't live without 'em.
This book nailed so much of the lawyer -we-are-all-so-screwed-up (yes, I do believe that), psyche to me.
Is that why I loved it?
I dunno. I dunno that I care.
I just want to read the sequels.
My husband didn't even know that there were sequels. (Did you?)
There is really nothing of literary import to report other than this:
Let's just be honest. Let's face it. You, the American public, you love you some lawyers, yes, you do. And you should. We stand between you and tyranny. Yes, we do. Whether Shakespeare said it or not, there is a reason that "First let's kill all the laywers" is so true in a coup d'etat and is so lovingly repeated without even thinking of that.
So keep on hating us, and keep on loving us. I'm pretty sure you'll keep on calling us at all hours of the night and day, especially on our vacation days (!!) with your "drop everything else, this is an emergency" situations. And we'll talk calm to you, and we'll likely help you, and by jove yes, we'll charge you, and we'll make you mad somehow, and then you can go back to hating us again, while watching all those lawyer shows, and movies, and reading all these crime/lawyer gone wrong books.
I vow to read them some more. Maybe I'll figure myself out.
Now here are you a couple of Haller truths (there are way more in the book, but only very few made it to Goodreads):
"You know what my father said about innocent clients? ... He said the scariest client a lawyer will ever have is an innocent client. Because if you fuck up and he goes to prison, it'll scar you for life ... He said there is no in-between with an innocent client. No negotiation, no plea bargain, no middle ground. There's only one verdict. You have to put an NG up on the scoreboard. There's no other verdict but not guilty."
* * *
"There is no client as scary as an innocent man."
* * *
“You're a sleazy defense lawyer with two ex-wifes and an eight-year-old daughter and we all love you.”
* * *
Yes, we do, Haller. God help us, we do.
P.S. Red Roof Reader -- oh ye that thought up this little exercise. It's a good one. Thank you.