Reviews



Commercial Awareness for Lawyers

Designed as a Diploma text, this book is worthy of a much wider, and older readership.

Published 6 January 2017

The Supreme Court

Ruadhán Mac Cormaic’s book on Ireland's Supreme Court comes highly recommended by Seosamh Gráinséir.

Published 23 December 2016

Forty Autumns: A Family's Story of Courage and Survival on Both Sides of the Berlin Wall

“I was five years old when I learned that my grandmother lived behind a curtain.” The line that opens this book written by a former U.S. intelligence officer, Nina Willner  is, of course, a reference to the Iron Curtain.

Published 18 November 2016

East West Street: On the Origins of Genocide and Crimes Against Humanity

Kapil Summan was greatly impressed by East West Street and spoke to the author about current threats to human rights.

Published 11 November 2016

Present Tense

The main character in WHS McIntyre’s book is Robbie Munro, a criminal lawyer in a one man band on Linlithgow High Street. From this book’s opening paragraph, it takes the reader into the highly recognisable field for lawyers undertaking criminal work as it refers to “Clients. They fall into one of three categories: sad, mad or bad”. How many times has that been said by lawyers on a daily basis? Robbie Munro is a criminal lawyer who is not doing too well but is trying to do his best, failing frequently but staying - thankfully for the Law Society of Scotland - on the right side of the law. He believes in justice.

Published 7 October 2016

Book review – Exercising Professional Judgement: Mastering the Craft of Lawyering

The fourth in Dr Fiona Westwood's series has just been published and is a must for any solicitor taking the nurturing of young lawyers or their own professional development seriously.

Published 5 October 2016

Churchill and Ireland

Published 30 September 2016

Beyond Reasonable Doubt: A Memoir by Ross Harper

Ross Harper remembers

Published 30 September 2016

Les Parisiennes: How the Women of Paris Lived, Loved and Died in the 1940s

Our ideas of Paris during the war may well have been shaped from the film Casablanca. "Well, Rick, we’ll always have Paris…" Ilsa (Ingrid Bergman) says. But I would doubt few, if any of us, would have paused to consider what Paris actually meant for those living there in the period of the Second World War. Those living there meant the women (because the men were absent, fighting or prisoners). This unique well-researched book comprises a collection of accounts by and about women who were left in an occupied country to face the enemy on an everyday basis. The enemy was not a stereotype – as many Germans were described as courteous, educated and cultured, enjoying the sophistication of Paris.

Published 16 September 2016

Marshall Hall: A Law unto Himself

Advocate Stephen O'Rourke is impressed with a new biography of the great barrister Marshall Hall.

Published 2 September 2016

Justice (terminally) delayed...

Published 12 August 2016

Poacher's Pilgrimage

John Sturrock QC enjoys a Poacher's Pilgrimage to the Western Isles and finds this mystical journey is much more than another travel book.

Published 5 August 2016

Hume: An Intellectual Biography

Long ago I was introduced to the philosophy of David Hume (1711-76) by the late Neil MacCormick lecturing in the Jurisprudence class at Edinburgh University. It was the best of ways to meet another great mind. In the scheme of the course Hume was presented as the harbinger of the end of Natural Law thinking, with his warning that “is” should not be confused with “ought”, and his argument that human reason (the main basis for Natural Law apart from God) is, and ought to be, the slave of the human passions.  We are primarily guided in our reasoning about what to do by our past experience (which of course includes the ways in which we observe others behaving in similar situations). In that process, our perceptions of cause and effect are mainly if not entirely guided by observation of constant conjunctions of facts or by custom and habit.  So, for example, justice, and its concomitants, property and promise-keeping, are thus artificial creations rather than matters of nature, designed by humans as means of holding in check and balance our tendency to pursue our own self-interest at the expense of others.

Published 22 July 2016

Set Adrift Upon the World: The Sutherland Clearances

In Set Adrift Upon the World: The Sutherland Clearances James Hunter masterly weaves together a fascinating account of the Sutherland Clearances. One that takes you from the Strath of Kildonan and other parts of Sutherland to battles in New Orleans via South Africa and onto the foundation of what is now the Canadian city of Winnipeg.

Published 22 July 2016

The Last Communard

It may surprise some readers that the last Communard of this title is not Jimmy Somerville, the shrill voice of the 1980s, but Adrien Lejeune who as a young free-thinker reluctantly took the side of the Commune revolutionaries when the people of Paris rose up against the reactionary French government that had capitulated to the besieging Prussians in 1871.

Published 15 July 2016