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Anonymous Lawyer

Anonymous Lawyer

Book rating: 03 Paperback

By (author) Jeremy Blachman

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  • Publisher: VINTAGE
  • Format: Paperback | 288 pages
  • Dimensions: 130mm x 196mm x 20mm | 159g
  • Publication date: 1 February 2007
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 0099507153
  • ISBN 13: 9780099507154
  • Sales rank: 65,384

Product description

He's a hiring partner at one of the world's largest law firms. Brilliant yet ruthless, he has little patience for associates who leave the office before midnight or steal candy from the bowl on his secretary's desk. He hates holidays and paralegals. And he's just started a web-blog to tell the world about what life is really like at the top of his profession. Meet Anonymous Lawyer - corner office, granite desk, and a billable rate of $675 an hour. The summer is about to start, and he's got a new crop of law school interns who will soon sign away their lives for a six-figure salary at the firm. But he's also got a few problems that require his attention. There's The Jerk, his bitter rival at the firm, who is determined to do whatever it takes to beat him out for the chairman's job. There's Anonymous Wife, who is spending his money as fast as he can make it. And there's that secret blog he's writing, which is a perverse bit of fun until he gets an e-mail from someone inside the firm who knows he's its author. Written in the form of a blog, Anonymous Lawyer is a fiendishly clever and hilarious debut that rips away the bland facade of corporate law and offers a telling glimpse inside a frightening world.

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Author information

Jeremy Blachman is not a hiring partner at a major law firm, but he is the author of a popular American blog called Anonymous Lawyer (www.anonymouslawyer.blogspot.com). The blog was profiled in The New York Times and receives an average of more than 100,000 readers a month. Blachman is a recent graduate of Harvard Law School and lives in Brooklyn, New York.

Customer reviews

By Mark Thwaite 10 Dec 2008 3

A married, middle-aged workaholic, Blachman's Anonymous Lawyer sets up a blog to chronicle his legal triumphs. At first the diary is a way of expressing the Lawyer’s contempt for his scheming partners and sycophantic associates. But as the blog’s popularity grows, his anonymity – and his sanity – become increasingly at risk. Told in an online epistolary style, the book is at first hilarious in its description of the Lawyer’s tormenting of his lesser colleagues – he frequently sends one graduate student, whom he calls the ‘Suck-Up’, to remote islands for nonexistent legal assignments. But, as the Lawyer says to his young niece, the blog becomes an outlet that he never knew he needed. The entries go from details of office etiquette and practical jokes to an exploration of the Lawyer’s insecurities and fears.
Scheming for promotion after his boss dies, the Anonymous Lawyer also starts to reflect on the insignificance of his little world – there’s an angry entry where he attends a school reunion expecting to impress old friends, only to find that no one has heard of his law firm or has any interest in what he’s doing. A plot with a beautiful colleague could see him running the entire company, but the Lawyer starts to question his ultimate ambition just as it has a chance of happening. Anonymous Lawyer is a light office comedy that takes on darker themes. It’s a consistently funny book about the age of mass expression and the drawbacks of a society that values work over life.
Max Dunbar

Review quote

"Stocked with up-to-the-minute references, and exposing, as it does, our culture's mania to win at all costs, ANONYMOUS LAWYER has pierced the heart of a moment in our social history" New York Post "A rather entertaining satirical debut that offers an expose of the lives of US corporate lawyers and what really goes on behind closed doors" www.bookbag.co.uk

Editorial reviews

Newsflash, regarding blue-chip lawyers: They're money-grubbing, venal and vacuous. Initially biting, this satirical debut soon bores, cynicism being a one-note melody.Hiring partner for an L.A. firm that stings clients at $675 an hour, Anonymous Lawyer makes Gordon Gecko look like Gandhi. Like Harvard Law grad Blachman, author of a popular blog, AL too pens a blog-about his bid to deep-six his rival, The Jerk, and brown-nose The New Chairman. "Person" equals "pawn" in his Machiavellian math: He gives subordinates unflattering nicknames ("The One Who's Never Getting Married," "The One Who Missed Her Kid's Funeral"), bitches about anyone pilfering his secretary's candy and damns all as slackers. You're allowed one outside interest-family, say, or working out; The Firm owns every other breath. AL never does much of anything other than sneer. And his home life is just as horrid: He prefers America's Top Model on TiVo to his fake-breasted wife; Anonymous Son and Daughter are disappointments. What drives him is his crusade to morph his Yale Law School niece from idealist into Shylock, and his own climb up the corporate ladder. When New Chairman dies-heart attack at 58-AL exults in the opening. The Jerk provisionally wins, but AL's eventual worldly success (and moral downfall) end the novel on a gleefully bitter note. Blachman's fine at capturing the high-end mise en scene-BlackBerries communing 24/7, triple-figure expense-account lunches, smirking dishonesty (lawyers bill clients for web-surfing and call it "research"). All kinda funny, and sorta telling-in a not-as-good-as-Brett-Easton-Ellis '80s-esque way. But lacking a story, any characters who aren't cartoons and any mood other than pissed-off, the tale leaves the reader feeling listless and mildly polluted.Legal eagles skewered-not wittily enough. (Kirkus Reviews)