Books to read before 1L?

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MoS
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby MoS » Mon Jan 03, 2011 10:50 pm

vamedic03 wrote:
MoS wrote:
DocHawkeye wrote:Many of your responses have been quite interesting (and those of you who don't fit into this category know who you are). Let me ask this question in a slighly different way that get better to the heart of what I'm looking for. What what are the books that everyone (faculty, staff, fellow students) will assume that you have read by the time you start law school? These books may hane nothing to do with law school directly or even with that law in general. I feel like I have kind of a "dark horse" sort of background - I am a classically trained musician - and have no significant coursework in the social sciences, philosophy, political science, english, and the like, unlike the bulk of law school applicants.


If you haven't had any logic courses, and didn't didn't study logic for the LSAT there is a book called Logic for Lawyers I would recommend. Find something to learn some basic economics for your torts class. It will help some.

As far a classic books, don't worry about it. The advise allot of people gave me was to read fiction, anything you enjoy, because you won't have time to do it later. Which is mostly true.

If your reading speed is subpar, read anything and everything. Mix fiction and non fiction, because not being able to read dense material will be to your detriment in law school. I would start with Freakonomics and Atlas Shrugged. Freakonomics will give you a perspective on social economics in basic terms and Atlas Shrugged will make you trudge through something you may not be that thrilled to read. I think thats good prep for law school.


I wouldn't even tell my enemies to read Ayn Rand.

I've never read it to be honest. Someone explained the concept of the book to me and I wanted to punch them in the face. But they like the book and were trying to tell me why it so great. But I think if you can get through that, its long, you won't have a problem reading cases.

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DocHawkeye
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby DocHawkeye » Mon Jan 03, 2011 10:54 pm

I enjoyed The Fountainhead.

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jre425
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby jre425 » Tue Jan 04, 2011 3:04 pm

John Stewart Mill's On Liberty is interesting legal philosophy.

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gdizz01
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby gdizz01 » Tue Jan 04, 2011 3:14 pm

I have been reading a TON of law-related books, and if you plan on going into corporate law especially, the following books will give you great insight into the realities of the profession:

The Partners....tells the story of partners at the top NYC firms involved in some of the most important cases of our time.
Double Billing: A Young Lawyer's Tale Of Greed, Sex, Lies, And The Pursuit Of A Swivel Chair...a memoire of a first-year associate at a major firm discussing his plight to find self-fulfillment and meaning in his work as a corporate lawyer; also a clever and funny read.
ivey briefs: true tales of a neurotic law student...about a perpetually worried girl from wisconson who lands at Columbia law and describes the various stressors she encounters

all are good books and give a very accurate and detailed look of what law school and corporate practice is really like. I recommend every one.

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vamedic03
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby vamedic03 » Tue Jan 04, 2011 6:45 pm

I'd also consider, out of general business literacy: Barbarians at the Gate (when you cover M&A in corporations, it'll really click); Liar's Poker; The Smartest Guys in the Room; The Partnership; and Too Big to Fail (Sorkin's book on the financial crisis - Fall of Lehman & AIG).

merfman
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby merfman » Thu Feb 03, 2011 3:03 pm

I recently went to an admitted students open house at Rutgers Newark. Some of the 3L's recommended The Nine, by Jeffrey Toobin and 1L, by Scott Turow (I just finished 1L, and although it probably isn't terribly reflective of current law school experience (it was written in 1975), it was highly entertaining)

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awilson11
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby awilson11 » Thu Feb 03, 2011 5:44 pm

I am a 0L so I can't speak to how well these books will help you in law school, but some books recommended to me and others that I really enjoy/feel may be good books to have read. Some I just enjoy, others I think might be useful: Second the Liar's Poker recommendation (also would suggest Moneyball if you like baseball at all). Same with Atlas Shrugged (its one of the most influential books of the century, which is why it is so polarizing. Seems like people either swear by it or hate it. Personally, I thought it was very good and raised some really important issues, whether you agree with its message or not. Ayn Rand was fairly nutty but that doesn't mean Atlas Shrugged isn't worth a read). Also really enjoyed the 48 Laws of Power and 33 Strategies of War by Robert Greene.

My biggest recommendation is Happy Hour is For Amateurs by Phila Lawyer. It was given to me by someone who tried to talk me out of law school. The book is hilarious, well-written, and the author is some kind of mad genius. If you finish this book and are still ready for a career in law, then you should be fine (at least that is what the person who gave it to me said to me).

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Cupidity
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby Cupidity » Thu Feb 03, 2011 5:47 pm

I read nothing but Vonnegut over the summer and I did very well on exams. I suggest you start your regimen with Galapagos and finish up with Bluebeard. Drinking while you read will improve your performance during 1L. I am serious.

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kalvano
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby kalvano » Thu Feb 03, 2011 5:52 pm

Read something that you enjoy. I highly recommend Game Of Thrones by Martin. The series as it stands should take a little while to read, and is just this side of awesome.

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JusticeHarlan
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby JusticeHarlan » Thu Feb 03, 2011 7:36 pm

kalvano wrote:Read something that you enjoy. I highly recommend Game Of Thrones by Martin. The series as it stands should take a little while to read, and is just this side of awesome.

Plus, when OP is graduating in 2014, the 5th book will probably be real close to being released :P

But to answer OP's question, I'd say read GTM if you really want to start gunning early, but other than that, enjoy your last break.

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kalvano
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby kalvano » Thu Feb 03, 2011 8:18 pm

GTM is good, but make sure to go back and re-read it halfway through the semester. It will make more sense.

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DocHawkeye
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby DocHawkeye » Fri Feb 04, 2011 1:46 am

JusticeHarlan wrote:
kalvano wrote:Read something that you enjoy. I highly recommend Game Of Thrones by Martin. The series as it stands should take a little while to read, and is just this side of awesome.

Plus, when OP is graduating in 2014, the 5th book will probably be real close to being released :P

But to answer OP's question, I'd say read GTM if you really want to start gunning early, but other than that, enjoy your last break.


Last break? That's good! I haven't been a break in more than five years. This summer, I'll be teaching a half-time load of college courses and assisting my wife through the last months of pregnancy. Wish me luck!

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MrKappus
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby MrKappus » Fri Feb 04, 2011 1:51 am

War and Peace. It's by Leo Tolstoy.

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Bosque
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby Bosque » Fri Feb 04, 2011 2:13 am

kalvano wrote:Read something that you enjoy. I highly recommend Game Of Thrones by Martin. The series as it stands should take a little while to read, and is just this side of awesome.


Glad I read through this thread before I posted. I heartily concur, this is the suggestion I came in here to make.

And for you visual learners, THIS is what you should read:

Image

2011Law
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby 2011Law » Fri Feb 04, 2011 2:27 am

johnnyutah wrote:
DocHawkeye wrote:If I had time to thoroughly read and understand one book between now and the time I enter law school in the fall, what should that book be and how will it benefit me as a 1L?

Moby Dick, because it is awesome.


+1, reading it right now actually

MrKappus wrote:War and Peace. It's by Leo Tolstoy.


I plan to read that, Crime and Punishment, and The Brothers Karamazov. I'm not exactly sure why, but they sound interesting and I have lots of time on my hands.

Also reading The Discoverers, about the great scientific discoveries, its alright.

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MrKappus
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby MrKappus » Fri Feb 04, 2011 5:40 am

2011Law wrote:
MrKappus wrote:War and Peace. It's by Leo Tolstoy.


I plan to read that, Crime and Punishment, and The Brothers Karamazov. I'm not exactly sure why, but they sound interesting and I have lots of time on my hands.


A decent public high school education should've already required you to read 2/3 of those. But if not, enjoy. They're fun.

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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby keg411 » Fri Feb 04, 2011 4:56 pm

"The Breathern" by Bob Woodward is a fantastic read (make sure you get the Woodward non-fiction book and not the Grisham fiction book). It's not going to help you in any substantive way for 1L/law school, but it's a more fun SCOTUS book than "The Nine" (and it's way more gossipy).

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Juff
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby Juff » Fri Feb 04, 2011 5:59 pm

Cupidity wrote:I read nothing but Vonnegut over the summer and I did very well on exams. I suggest you start your regimen with Galapagos and finish up with Bluebeard. Drinking while you read will improve your performance during 1L. I am serious.


+1, only because I did well and happened to have read God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater (among others) before 1L. Apparently this is not a coincidence.

2011Law
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby 2011Law » Fri Feb 04, 2011 8:28 pm

MrKappus wrote:
2011Law wrote:
MrKappus wrote:War and Peace. It's by Leo Tolstoy.


I plan to read that, Crime and Punishment, and The Brothers Karamazov. I'm not exactly sure why, but they sound interesting and I have lots of time on my hands.


A decent public high school education should've already required you to read 2/3 of those. But if not, enjoy. They're fun.


Did you go to a public high school?

I went to a top100 public high school, ranked by newsweek I think, and took all the english/humanities/social sciences AP classes I could, which were mostly a joke, don't know how I passed the exams (they must have graded them on one hell of a curve). Not that I can say for sure how dense or hard they are to read, but I don't think we were ever required to read anything nearly as dense.

Maybe your talking about public high schools in Sweden?

die Zauberflote
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby die Zauberflote » Fri Feb 04, 2011 8:49 pm

johnnyutah wrote:Moby Dick, because it is awesome.


+1,000.

I think that making your way through the slower, sloughy parts in search of the thread of profundity which meanders through every chapter is completely relevant. I also think that Great Expectations would be a good read before law school.

A really great resource that I don't think has been mentioned on this board is "The Debate on the Constitution : Federalist and Antifederalist Speeches, Articles, and Letters During the Struggle over Ratification." It's 2,500 pages, but worth its weight in gold. Also check out "Legal Writing in Plain English" and "Grammar by Diagram," available from Broadview Press. Modern American Usage: A Guide by Wilson Follett is also good; so is the 2nd edition of Fowler's. I would also read the second half of How to Get Into Law School by Susan Estrich, which is about making the most of your law school experience. The University of Chicago website hosts a lecture by Karl Llewellyn that is great. Maybe check out 1L of a Ride and Starting Off Right in Law School, as well as the articles on succeeding as a 1L on this site. Another cool thing to check out (and now I'm just rambling) is Plutarch's Lives...relevant to any person at any time. If you want to do something substantive read the introductions for the 1L curriculum E&E books.

die Zauberflote
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby die Zauberflote » Fri Feb 04, 2011 8:50 pm

2011Law wrote:I plan to read that, Crime and Punishment, and The Brothers Karamazov. I'm not exactly sure why, but they sound interesting and I have lots of time on my hands.


Be sure to get the Pevear/Volokhonsky translations...they're accurate and sublime.

MrKappus wrote:A decent public high school education should've already required you to read 2/3 of those. But if not, enjoy. They're fun.
Would even the brightest high-schooler be able to extract the worth from these books? I think not. I'd take a 25-year-old-everyman's reading over a sixteen-year-old's, Brunswick School or Laboratory School reading any day of the week.

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MrKappus
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby MrKappus » Sun Feb 06, 2011 4:14 am

2011Law wrote:Did you go to a public high school?

I went to a top100 public high school, ranked by newsweek I think, and took all the english/humanities/social sciences AP classes I could, which were mostly a joke, don't know how I passed the exams (they must have graded them on one hell of a curve). Not that I can say for sure how dense or hard they are to read, but I don't think we were ever required to read anything nearly as dense.

Maybe your talking about public high schools in Sweden?


That I did, and in a state w/ a public school ranking of 41-50. And we read C&P and Brothers Karamazov. Not sure if I "got" them, but we did read them.

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Lawquacious
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby Lawquacious » Sun Feb 06, 2011 4:28 am

Kilpatrick wrote:"How to use the search function on TLS"



lol'd at this response, but yeah, the search function on this site still sucks IMO (TLS'ers were asking for an update in the search function about a year ago but I don't get the impression anything changed).. That said, I think there probably are a bunch of threads on this already if you try some different search terms. Also, I think you have to search under the 'forum' box rather than the 'site' box. I don't think I've ever gotten anything relevant or useful using the site box. Also, TLS results come up in google, so you could check that way too.

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MURPH
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby MURPH » Sun Feb 06, 2011 5:33 am

I would read Lord of the Barnyard by triston egolf and A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole. Seriously, if you read these before law school you will not learn a damn thing to help you. But occasionally you'll be able to laugh.

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Mickey Quicknumbers
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Re: Books to read before 1L?

Postby Mickey Quicknumbers » Sun Feb 06, 2011 8:07 am

read three times:
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read twice:
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read once:
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My professors expected nothing less.




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