What are the best books to buy to prepare for law school?

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snotrocket
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Re: What are the best books to buy to prepare for law school?

Postby snotrocket » Mon Jun 30, 2008 12:50 pm

'snotrocket,' please expand. This seems pretty patronizing and kindof weak, so I'm curious to know if you're trying to say what I think you're trying to say.

What's weak is relying on the "majority" to tell you anything about what works and what doesn't in law school. That was just a silly point. At best it will always be a dead heat between those who wound up above and below the median. And those who do really well will by definition be a small minority (5 - 25%, depending on your definition of really well). If you want advice that matters, then look for the people who have done well and see what they have to say (views from four of them are quoted above).
Last edited by snotrocket on Mon Jun 30, 2008 3:23 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Corsair
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Re: What are the best books to buy to prepare for law school?

Postby Corsair » Mon Jun 30, 2008 1:02 pm

..

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mumbling2myself
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Re: What are the best books to buy to prepare for law school?

Postby mumbling2myself » Mon Jun 30, 2008 1:11 pm

snotrocket wrote:
'snotrocket,' please expand. This seems pretty patronizing and kindof weak, so I'm curious to know if you're trying to say what I think you're trying to say.


What's weak is relying on the "majority" to tell you anything about what works and what doesn't in law school. That was just a silly point. At best it will always be a dead heat between those who wound up above and below the median. And those who do really well will by definition be a small minority (5 - 25%, depending on your definition of really well). If you want advice that matters, then look for the people who have proven outstanding results and see what they have to say (views from four of them are quoted above).


That's what I thought.

First off, there's a mistake in assuming that only people who have done incredibly well can provide valuable information. Personally, I'd be just as interested to learn what those who did poorly have to say so that I could avoid their mistakes. Secondly, just because others on this site are free to broadcast their GPA doesn't mean that those of who don't did poorly, and it's pretty ridiculous to assume that any of those people providing advice are not at the top of their respective classes. Speaking for myself, I wouldn't presume to give advice if I didn't believe it was worthwhile. I'm pretty damn sure nonunique and TTT-LS feel the same way, and I have the benefit of knowing that they did well this past year.

If you want advice that matters, don't be so fucking snarky. None of the law students who post on this site are getting paid to do so, and none of them have an interest in seeing you fail. If someone who's had some experience offers some advice, feel free to take it or not. Sure, the 'majority opinion' bit was a weak bit of rhetoric, but focusing on that instead of the content was stupid.

Additionally, he's absolutely right about the 'majority opinion.' Try and find anyone, top of their class or bottom who would recommend the contracts E&E over Chirelstein (or conlaw E&E over Chemerinski, or, really, reading the Property E&E before heading to class). His point was that even for just summer reading, the E&E's are not equal. I read the Civ Pro, Torts, and Crim E&E prior to coming to law school, and got way more out of Torts and Crim. I would have been fucking lost with the Property E&E (it's extremely barebones) and the K's E&E is borderline nonsensical compared to Chirelstein.

His whole goddamn point was that there's nothing wrong with reading E&E's, but that of the dozens published, there are only at most 3-4 that are worth reading prior to starting law school. That being said, feel free to waste your time boning up on Real Estate Transactions or California Community Property if that really floats your boat.

06072010
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Re: What are the best books to buy to prepare for law school?

Postby 06072010 » Mon Jun 30, 2008 1:25 pm

Here are my thoughts on it.

Person X reads everything he can over the summer. He outlines answers, does 100 RAP hypos and can spit out Chemerinksy verbatim. During the semester, Person X goes gangbusters, reading every case, attending every class, and knocking out the practice tests.

Person Y skims the E&E over the summer. During the semester, Person X goes gangbusters, reading every case, attending every class, and knocking out the practice tests.

Person Z drinks Goldslager until he pukes every other day over summer. During the semester, Person X goes gangbusters, reading every case, attending every class, and knocking out the practice tests.

All other things being equal, Person X,Y, and Z end up with the same class rank.

Let's talk about Person Q. Every law school has a Person Q -- likely a bunch of em. Person Q is a disastrous stressball who goes to law school because they enjoy -- subconsciously -- the uber-competitive nature of law school and ultimately base their self worth off their grades. Person Q does everything they can think of. Q preps like a mother over the summer and goes absolutely apeshit during the semester. They never go out. They read several secondary sources on each class. They don't sleep. They go to office hours and try to pump professors for the one nugget of wisdom that will carry their grades and hopefully their self-esteem. The make outlines of the commercial outlines and then tab them, write in the margins and never actually gain an understanding of the law because they're too busy highlighting. I actually saw some chick highlighting entire pages and then highlighting passages in the already highlighted text in a different color. I heard she died from an epileptic seizure.

Person Q routinely gets chewed up by law school. It eats them alive, because by the time the tests come, they're so disorganized and fucked up that anything they put down is law school mush.

Lesson? Don't be Person Q.

snotrocket
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Re: What are the best books to buy to prepare for law school?

Postby snotrocket » Mon Jun 30, 2008 1:31 pm

Corsair wrote:inbeforetheTTT-LSfreakout.

My first post in this thread responded to the compulsion of several posters on here to jump in and mock anyone who brings up the idea of summer reading, any time this subject comes up. Obviously I am not the only one who has noticed this.

mumbling2myself wrote:His whole goddamn point was that there's nothing wrong with reading E&E's, but that of the dozens published, there are only at most 3-4 that are worth reading prior to starting law school. That being said, feel free to waste your time boning up on Real Estate Transactions or California Community Property if that really floats your boat.

What does this have to do with anything? I have never seen anyone talking about summer reading suggest or say that they did more than reading primers on the subjects covered during the 1L year. If you want people to take your views seriously, don't be so fucking touchy.
Last edited by snotrocket on Mon Jun 30, 2008 3:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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nonunique
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Re: What are the best books to buy to prepare for law school?

Postby nonunique » Mon Jun 30, 2008 2:52 pm

Point thoroughly missed.

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mumbling2myself
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Re: What are the best books to buy to prepare for law school?

Postby mumbling2myself » Mon Jun 30, 2008 2:56 pm

nonunique wrote:Point thoroughly missed.


Actually I think it was a rather artful display of comedic irony. He (I'm assuming a woman would hesitate to post under the monker, 'snotrocket,' though perhaps that's just another layer of the joke) posted something really snarky which completely missed the point of your post, and when corrected posted something really snarky which completely missed the point of mine.

I'm guessing he responds to this with something snarky and point-missing as well. Bravo!

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aguyingeorgia
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Re: What are the best books to buy to prepare for law school?

Postby aguyingeorgia » Mon Jun 30, 2008 2:57 pm

I'm not really sure what this thread has to do with ducks.

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TTT-LS
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Re: What are the best books to buy to prepare for law school?

Postby TTT-LS » Mon Jun 30, 2008 8:18 pm

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Last edited by TTT-LS on Sun Jun 20, 2010 3:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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hkm6315
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Re: What are the best books to buy to prepare for law school?

Postby hkm6315 » Tue Jul 01, 2008 11:47 pm

Thanks guys! That thread got a little wild back there for a second lol. I do take seriously and truly appreciate the different honest opinions on here and have for some time now. I largely credit the opinions and advice on here about different LSAT preparation class recommendations, LSAT study methods, etc. for helping me get a higher LSAT score the second time around and a scholarship to the school I wanted to attend. I am definitely going to research some of these summer reading suggestions and plan on doing some *light* reading in the next few months. I guess the moral of the story here seems to be: Don't be Q.

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hkm6315
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Re: What are the best books to buy to prepare for law school?

Postby hkm6315 » Thu Jul 10, 2008 12:41 am

I caved and bought Dressler's Understanding Criminal Law. It seems pretty reasonable in length and I only bought it because I ran across it for incredibly cheap at Half Price Books... TTT, please don't yell at me. lol. I am not going to go crazy with it and decided that if I find Chirelstein's Contracts I might skim that too because it seems pretty light. I noticed that the person who had the Crim Law book before me highlighted every page and wrote in the columns until page 150 where he/she gave up.

Wakefield0644
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Re: What are the best books to buy to prepare for law school?

Postby Wakefield0644 » Thu Jul 10, 2008 12:54 am

SoftBoiledLife wrote:The Complete Calvin and Hobbes

TITCR

I have every book...including the amazing 10th year anniversary with commentary :D

Wakefield0644
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Re: What are the best books to buy to prepare for law school?

Postby Wakefield0644 » Thu Jul 10, 2008 12:59 am

Oh and give "The Paper Chase" a look...I enjoyed it.
It's an excellent novel.

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J-Rod
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Re: What are the best books to buy to prepare for law school?

Postby J-Rod » Thu Jul 10, 2008 1:09 am

a book showing you how to make 1001 cocktails

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underdawg
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Re: What are the best books to buy to prepare for law school?

Postby underdawg » Fri Jul 11, 2008 7:31 pm

lol, uva kidz

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studymaster
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Re: What are the best books to buy to prepare for law school?

Postby studymaster » Sun Feb 15, 2009 10:46 pm

PKSebben wrote:Here are my thoughts on it.

Person X reads everything he can over the summer. He outlines answers, does 100 RAP hypos and can spit out Chemerinksy verbatim. During the semester, Person X goes gangbusters, reading every case, attending every class, and knocking out the practice tests.

Person Y skims the E&E over the summer. During the semester, Person X goes gangbusters, reading every case, attending every class, and knocking out the practice tests.

Person Z drinks Goldslager until he pukes every other day over summer. During the semester, Person X goes gangbusters, reading every case, attending every class, and knocking out the practice tests.

All other things being equal, Person X,Y, and Z end up with the same class rank.


I would like to hear a defense of this, because it seems ridiculuous on its face.

06072010
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Re: What are the best books to buy to prepare for law school?

Postby 06072010 » Sun Feb 15, 2009 11:31 pm

I'm not just making this stuff up. I'm a 2L with pretty decent grades. I've worked in a variety of study and prep situations (notice I read through the E&E's before my first semester) and have seen absolutely no correlation between pre-semester studying and grades.

Why is it ridiculous? Don't you understand that each professor teaches (especially at the top schools) a very limited subset of information in a particular topic. You take Torts by professor X. Not Torts. I think supplements can be useful, but outside the context of the casebook / professor their utility is VERY limited. Couple that with the possibility of burnout and I'm not sure the risk is worth it.

But, let me just tell you what you want to hear. Study everything before the semester and you will get all A's.

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TTT-LS
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Re: What are the best books to buy to prepare for law school?

Postby TTT-LS » Mon Feb 16, 2009 3:46 am

.
Last edited by TTT-LS on Sun Jun 20, 2010 6:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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bighead715
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Re: What are the best books to buy to prepare for law school?

Postby bighead715 » Sun Nov 29, 2009 5:55 pm

TTT-LS wrote:
PKSebben wrote:Why is it ridiculous? Don't you understand that each professor teaches (especially at the top schools) a very limited subset of information in a particular topic. You take Torts by professor X. Not Torts. I think supplements can be useful, but outside the context of the casebook / professor their utility is VERY limited. Couple that with the possibility of burnout and I'm not sure the risk is worth it.

But, let me just tell you what you want to hear. Study everything before the semester and you will get all A's.

Yup. Most incoming law students, or at least most here on TLS, are more or less hard-wired for the idea that there is nothing in life that cannot be prepared for -- so much so that they they cannot accept any argument to the contrary, even when extraordinarily successful 2Ls, 3Ls, and grads are the ones making it.

Like studymaster, their gut just tells them "that can't be right." Plus, there's the anxiety about jobs, the desire to do as well as possible, the competitive drive, and the enormous cost of law school. Most of the all, there's the free time before school starts. In typical type-A form, the 0L rationalizes that the best way to use this unheard of free time (for the 0L surely worked far too hard in undergrad, and enjoyed college life too little) is to fill it with MOAR STUDYING. Faced with opposing information, the 0L resorts to confirmation bias, cherry picking posts that come anywhere close to hinting that summer prep might help with grades, and rejecting those that go the other way. Coupled with the faulty logic that at the very worst summer prep "won't hurt," this confirmation bias becomes an invincible force.

The truth is that there are many ways to spend your 0L summer, and none of them is universally the right one. People should do whatever suits them, and if that's law school "prep," fine, go do it.* My main points, which are the same as PK's points, are only (1) that a decision to "prep" should not just be a default -- if you're gonna go that route, you should carefully consider all your options and why you're picking the one you're picking, before you commit to it; and (2) that for many people the best path for 0L summer is the least obvious. There is tremendous value in a relaxing, exciting, and decidedly non-studious 0L summer. There are plenty of threads here on TLS explaining why. Do yourself a favor, studymaster, and read them.

* I put the term "prep" in quotes, btw, because really it isn't prep for the things you'll actually need to do/challenges you'll need to overcome, it just *seems* like it is, like a placebo.



PSH - i will be a michigan summer starter - and i am taking your advice NOT to do shit to heart :D

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eatmykant
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Re: What are the best books to buy to prepare for law school?

Postby eatmykant » Sun Nov 29, 2009 6:15 pm

Oblomov wrote:A Theory Of Justice --Rawls

Critique of Practical Reason --Kant

Leviathan --Hobbes

Spirit of the Laws -Montesquieu

Tractus -Wittgenstein

Leviticus & Matthew and Romans

Summa Theologica --Aquinas, with special attention to Law V. Custom

Without these, you'll never "get" the law. If that's a little too much, and you don't mind putting yourself at a great disadvantage, spend the summer pouring over McCarthy's Blood Meridian; its pretty much a distillation of this list.


BUMP




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