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22 August 2011

Raising the Bar

Technically, I'm now out of my self-imposed three-month ban on contemplating a career in the law, although I've been too busy at work to really give it any proper thought. In any case, little titbits of information about season three of The Good Wife, which starts in just over a month, are starting to filter through: ooh, Alicia gets a new 'do...and a new attitude. How will I ever wait another month to find out what happened when she and Will finally made it into the presidential suite of the busiest hotel in Chicago? And will Alicia beat Peggy Olson for the Emmy?

Anyway, to sate my desire for all things legal, I've been reading a book called Law and Disorder by Tim Kevan, which is a kind of cross between The Good Wife, The Devil Wears Prada and Bridget Jones's Diary but with a male protagonist. Specifically, BabyBarista a pupil barrister who has one year to win tenancy in his chambers: of four pupil barristers, only one will make the cut (see, it's just like Alicia vs Carey!). The book was originally published as a series of Kevan's columns on the BabyBarista blog, and is perfect for someone as legally voyeuristic as me, although unlike The Good Wife, it isn't really glamourising the legal profession for me--BabyBarista's name is, after all, taken from the instructions given to him by his pupil master, TheBoss, on his first day: "I take my coffee on the hour but if I'm working hard, I'd like it more often. It's something you'll have to learn to judge."

Winning tenancy is BabyBarista's last chance to pay off his mother's debts, incurred, in part, to pay for his university and bar fees. But he has stiff competition from TopFirst, BusyBody and, to a lesser degree, Worrier. Meanwhile, stereotypes abound among the qualified barristers like the unscrupulous Boss, old school OldRuin and BabyBarista's second pupil master (or rather, mistress), UpTights, who sounds a bit like Diane during the first season of The Good Wife before she mellowed.

I haven't finished the book yet but I've been enjoying it a lot--and it makes a change to read something funny, albeit darkly funny, after the just plain dark things I've been reading lately (and by lately, I mean forever).

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