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April Book Drive

Book Drive

Each month we will seek donors to purchase a new title for the Law Library. Here is our Wish List for the month of April. Growing our collection is about so much more than a single book—it is a living demonstration of how the Library expands the public’s access to justice and provides legal practitioners with the tools they need to represent members of our local community. Please see our Donation Guide for more ways to support the Law Library.

The Trial Lawyer
The Trial Lawyer: What It Takes to Win, 2nd ed.
Written by David Berg
$99.95, Paperback, 2018
ISBN: 978-1-64105-110-1

The ABA is offering 25% off with promo code REVIEW19

Representing People with Mental Disabilities
Representing People with Mental Disabilities: A Practical Guide for Criminal Defense Lawyers
Edited by Elizabeth Kelley
$49.95, Paperback, 2018
ISBN: 978-1-64105-176-7

The ABA is offering 25% off with promo code REVIEW19

Internet of ThingsInternet of Things (IoT): Legal Issues, Policy, & Practical Strategies
Edited by Cynthia H. Cwik, Christopher A. Suarez, and Lucy L. Thomson
$89.95, Paperback, 2019
ISBN: 978-1-64105-364-8


Thank you to James Michel for generously donating John Lennon vs. The USA: The Inside Story of the Most Bitterly Contested and Influential Deportation Case in United States History, part of our August 2018 Book Drive.

Thank you to Althea Kippes for generously donating both books from our February Book Drive — California Animal Laws Handbook, 2019 and The Art of Fact Investigation.

Thank you to Brenna Moorhead for generously donating Dred Scott v. Sandford: Opinions and Contemporary Commentary, from our May 2018 Book Drive.

Please take a look at our Book Drive page to see Wish List items from prior months. We are still wishing for these books!


To donate, please contact sflawlibrary@sfgov.org or call (415) 554-1791. We appreciate your contribution!

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April Book of the Month: The Library Book

library-book-medThe Library Book
By Susan Orlean
Reviewed by Courtney Nguyen, Reference Librarian

Fire. Stolen books. Lawsuits. Threats of eviction. Lack of funding.

Susan Orlean writes about nearly everything that a library fears in The Library Book, her fascinating and deeply researched account of the 1986 fire that destroyed the Central Public Library of Los Angeles. Like the best modern public libraries, Orlean’s extraordinary book is difficult to define: The Library Book is a true crime story of an unsolved arson case from the 1980s; a chronicle of the Los Angeles Public Library and her colorful directors, librarians, and patrons; a study of the evolving role of the library in American society; and a memoir of a lifelong reader and library patron. The sprawling cast of characters includes an aspiring actor with a penchant for lying (and perhaps fire); an eighteen-year-old female library director whose father had to walk her home from work because of her age; and a librarian who sneakily read “dangerous” books kept locked in a metal cage in the basement during her lunch break. All of these elements and more come together to form a sweeping panorama of the public library’s unique place in the community and people’s lives.

Just as a library contains different subjects and genres to appeal to a wide audience, so too does Orlean offer something for everyone by looking at the fire and the institution of libraries from various and oftentimes surprising angles. The chapter devoted to the actual April 29, 1986 blaze rivals the intensity of any action film, while her sobering examination of the practice of book burning frames the fire in a new devastating light. Orlean’s search for the possible arsonist is as riveting as any true crime serial, and her journalism background moves to the forefront as she follows suspects, detectives, firemen, city attorneys, and those charged with dealing with the aftermath of the destruction. Library enthusiasts can delight in the (often cheeky) card catalog headings that open each chapter before reading about the inner workings of a modern public library and what librarians actually do all day. Orlean’s book also serves as a history of the library and Los Angeles from the 1800s to the present-day, for a history of a public library will inevitably also be a history of a city and a community.

Orlean writes that “[A] library is as much a portal as it is a place—it is a transit point, a passage.” The same could be said of her book, which serves as both a record of fires and eccentric librarians as well as a portal to thinking about the importance and future of libraries. The book makes a strong case for the idea that libraries are embedded in a city physically and mentally—physically in the form of the actual buildings as well as through the constant transportation of library materials to the different branches, running like veins through the city; and mentally in the knowledge they guard and the memories they hold for both lifelong and casual patrons. Perhaps we are biased, but The Library Book is essential reading for everyone in any community. Find this book in its natural habitat at a public library today, including ours.


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March Book of the Month: The Legal Career

The Legal CareerThe Legal Career: Knowing the Business, Thriving in Practice
By Katrina Lee
Reviewed by Andrea Woods, Reference Librarian

The Legal Career: Knowing the Business, Thriving in Practice is a useful new book from West Academic Publishing that provides a thorough examination of the state of the legal industry today. It is oriented toward law students and aims to help them understand the business of law and how to navigate within the legal profession as they set out on their careers. This book is also appropriate for new lawyers or those with an interest in evaluating the changes that have occurred in law and better positioning themselves for a successful career.

Author Katrina Lee is well-versed in the legal profession. She is a San Francisco native who attended UC Berkeley, became an equity partner in a large law firm, served on the Board of Directors of the Bar Association of San Francisco, and is now an associate clinical professor at The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law. With her vast experience, she takes readers on an insiders’ tour of the legal industry, beginning with the traditional law firm business model, and then exploring how legal process outsourcing and legal services outsourcing have transformed the modern practice of law. Lee goes on to examine how in-house practice is evolving and also drives further change in the legal field in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis. Subsequent chapters cover the seismic advances in legal technology that have transpired, changes in ethics and the unauthorized practice of law as some states move to allow legal technicians, how the legal field is changing to serve low and middle income people, innovations in legal education to equip new lawyers for this brave new world, and finally, how to find satisfaction and even happiness amid the pressures and stress of law practice.

In all, The Legal Career is exceptional in the amount of detail and insight it provides into the inner workings of the legal profession and the fast-paced changes that are currently shaking it up. Most notable are the in-depth interviews that Lee conducts with industry insiders that span everyone from knowledge management professionals and legal tech entrepreneurs, to Big Law associates and “alternative model law firm” founders. This invaluable insider information is the gem of the book.

The Legal Career was kindly donated to the Law Library by author Katrina Lee.


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March Book Drive

Book Drive

Each month we will seek donors to purchase a new title for the Law Library. Here is our Wish List for the month of March. Growing our collection is about so much more than a single book—it is a living demonstration of how the Library expands the public’s access to justice and provides legal practitioners with the tools they need to represent members of our local community. Please see our Donation Guide for more ways to support the Law Library.

Entertainment Law
Entertainment Law: Fundamentals and Practice
Written by Corey Field
$122.95, Paperback, 2017
ISBN: 978-1-51652-429-7

2019 Legal Technology Guide
The 2019 Solo and Small Firm Legal Technology Guide
Written by Sharon D. Nelson et al.
$89.95, Paperback, 2019
ISBN: 978-1-64105-375-4

CA Administrative Law

California Administrative Law: A Legal Research Guide
Written by Caitlin Hunter
$79, Paperback, 2019
ISBN: 978-0-8377-4088-1


Thank you to Althea Kippes for generously donating both books from our February Book Drive — California Animal Laws Handbook, 2019 and The Art of Fact Investigation.

Thank you to Brenna Moorhead for generously donating Dred Scott v. Sandford:
Opinions and Contemporary Commentary
, from our May 2018 Book Drive.

Please take a look at our Book Drive page to see Wish List items from prior months. We are still wishing for these books!


To donate, please contact sflawlibrary@sfgov.orgor call (415) 554-1791. We appreciate your contribution!


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Presidents’ Month—A Library Special Collection

Nixon
The Complete Record of Richard M. Nixon Impeachment Proceedings

The San Francisco Law Library has a timely, extraordinary 23-volume set of United States Congressional hearing transcripts, witness testimony, documents, and evidence regarding the Watergate break-in, the Nixon impeachment investigation and proceedings, and related activities from January 1971 through October 1973. The set begins with A Resolution Authorizing and Directing the Committee on the Judiciary to Investigate Whether Sufficient Grounds Exist for the House of Representatives to Exercise its Constitutional Power to Impeach Richard M. Nixon, President of the United States, pursuant to House Resolution 803 of the 93rd Congress. Subsequent Statement of Information volumes include witness testimony and documents regarding Events Prior to the Watergate Break-in; White House Surveillance and Campaign Activities; Presidential Statements on the Watergate Break-in and Its Investigation; Transcripts of Eight Recorded Presidential Conversations; Witness Testimony; and the Final Report of the Select Committee on Presidential Campaign Activities to the Committee United States Senate, pursuant to 1973 Senate Resolution 60 of the 93rd Congress. The set contains a volume of selected historical impeachment materials including debates on presidential impeachment from 1787, President Andrew Johnson’s impeachment proceedings and other perspectives on impeachment. (The Law Library’s collection also contains a book about the Johnson impeachment.)

These amazing chronicles enable one to re-live the nation’s three-year state of political paralysis through the avalanche of motions, briefs, subpoenas, and other legal instruments that came to define the Nixon presidency, and offers Library patrons the opportunity to consider what may lay ahead regarding current political developments. The set is on reserve and may be viewed in the Library on request.


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February Book of the Month: Becoming

BecomingBecoming
By Michelle Obama
Reviewed by Ruth Geos, Reference Librarian

Even if you don’t remember the fist-bump, begin with the beginning of Becoming and you will hear the vivid voice of a first-class storyteller with a full tale to tell. She is not just the former First Lady here but a narrator with a fascinating perspective of time and place. Michelle LaVaughn Obama describes growing up in a loving family in the South Side of Chicago, with her own evolution from a feisty little girl always ready for the next challenge, to Princeton and then to Harvard Law School, and — skipping ahead, as we already know — eventually to the White House, with her own initiatives and advocacy as First Lady over the two terms of the Obama administration. The Preface is an exceptional essay in itself, with an articulate grace and the kind of direct honesty that every good story needs, and history demands:

…until recently, I was the First Lady of the United States of America—a job that’s not officially a job, but that nonetheless has given me a platform like nothing I could have imagined. It challenged me and humbled me, lifted me up and shrank me down, sometimes all at once. I’m just beginning to process what took place these last years — from the moment in 2006 when my husband first started talking about running for president to the cold morning this winter when I climbed into a limo with Melania Trump, accompanying her to her husband’s inauguration. It’s been quite a ride…

It’s an intriguing story, starting with Becoming Me (the other sections are Becoming Us, and Becoming More) — a personal recounting of growing up in a largely African-American community, beginning to understand her own close family dynamics and community, and seeing how the history of deep discrimination had thwarted dreams and desires in her family and across the South Side. The story she weaves is anything but didactic, but a clear tracing of the cumulative impact of discrimination, such as how one grandfather’s dreams to be an electrician and to get a good union job were blocked, and others in her family circle limited to work in which there was no way to rise and push ahead.

Of course, before the White House lawn becomes a model garden, there are miles to go — piano recitals, marriage and children, campaigns, and many high-level professional positions. Ultimately, Becoming is a narrative of one woman’s intelligence, frustrations, humor, style, and perspicacity, with an inborn jolt of courage and personal daring, across history and her own personal way. Not the least, it also offers a fresh reminder of eight years of a White House not that long ago—and an altogether fascinating read. As Mrs. Obama says: “Your story is what you have, what you will always have. It is something to own.”


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February Book Drive

Book Drive

Each month we will seek donors to purchase a new title for the Law Library. Here is our Wish List for the month of February. Growing our collection is about so much more than a single book—it is a living demonstration of how the Library expands the public’s access to justice and provides legal practitioners with the tools they need to represent members of our local community. Please see our Donation Guide for more ways to support the Law Library.

Both February books have been donated! Thank you for your support!

CA Animal Laws HandbookCalifornia Animal Laws Handbook, 2019
Published by State Humane Association of California

The Art of Fact InvestigationThe Art of Fact Investigation: Creative Thinking in the Age of Information Overload
Written by Philip Segal
ISBN: 978-0-99690-791-0

To donate these or other books, please contact sflawlibrary@sfgov.org or call (415) 554-1791.  We appreciate your contribution!