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Anonymous Lawyer: A Novel [Kindle Edition]

Jeremy Blachman
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (54 customer reviews)

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Book Description

A wickedly funny debut novel about a high-powered lawyer whose shockingly candid blog about life inside his firm threatens to destroy him

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 weblog 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 spectacularly entertaining debut that rips away the bland façade of corporate law and offers a telling glimpse inside a frightening world. Hilarious and fiendishly clever, Jeremy Blachman's tale of a lawyer who lives a lie and posts the truth is sure to be one of the year's most talked-about novels.

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Blachman's side-achingly funny debut, derived from his popular blog of the title, is written in the candid, sanctimonious voice of Anonymous Lawyer, an ill-humored, ill-tempered hiring partner at a prestigious New York firm. Anonymous Lawyer is an 18-year man whose compulsion to blog is almost as strong as his desire for the firm's chairmanship. When he's not facing off with his nemesis, The Jerk, in the race for the chair, he takes solace in degrading his summer interns and hapless associates for his quickly developing cult of readers (who e-mail with guesses at his identity). The dirt Anonymous Lawyer dishes is crude, and grounded in his own snobbery and narcissism: his female victims include The One Who's Never Getting Married, The One Who Missed Her Kid's Funeral and The Bombshell (at the annual office charity auction, a date with her went to Lives With His Mom for $6,000). Predictably, potential unmasking makes things sticky for the potential chairman, in what is pretty much the book's single plot point. Written in the rapidly dating blog-form and about as subtle as a punch to the kidneys, the dead-on exaggerations of Blachman, a recent Harvard Law grad, are nonetheless more than enough to propel this debut. (Aug.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Though the epistolary novel occupies a small but lofty literary niche, the e-mail novel never gained a foothold, and readers are likely to greet "blog novels" with suspicion. Blachman writes a popular satirical blog called Anonymous Lawyer [], in which his fictitious alter ego, an arrogant hiring partner at a major law firm, explains the cutthroat culture of the legal profession. This is pretty much the same thing: Anonymous is obsessed with becoming chairman, maintaining the firm's rigid hierarchy, and maximizing the billable hours of his overworked associates. He starts a blog on a lark, savages his colleagues, gets discovered, and finds his aspirations endangered. The paper-thin plot would make the book seem like a cheap attempt to cash in on the blog's popularity if it weren't so damn funny. Anonymous is hilariously malevolent (he refers to "winning" friendly conversations), affording readers the thrill of vicariously acting out their darkest impulses while confirming their belief that only lawyers would act so badly. Readers won't remember the story, but they'll quote the best lines. Keir Graff
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Product Details

  • File Size: 338 KB
  • Print Length: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.; First Edition edition (April 17, 2007)
  • Sold by: Macmillan
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005XMMPE4
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #198,813 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
By 2L
This book is really funny & so true!! Blachman captures all of the ridiculous aspects of firm life that my lawyer friends always complain about. As a law student myself, I hope it's not *exactly* like that to work at a firm, but from everything I've heard, Blachman's parody is right on. I can see why he chose to be a writer instead of an attorney! Definitely good summer reading.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Everything I Expected & More July 25, 2006
I've been a fan of the anonymous lawyer blog for quite some time now. I picked up this book this morning on my way to work (yes, I've been anticipating the release). I've skimmed through the book and read the first quarter of it so far, and I'm happy to say that Jeremy Blachman appears to have superbly evolved his writing without losing the humorous, engaging technique that has made the Anonymous Lawyer blog such a hit. The satire that seeps through everything in Anonymous Lawyer makes this book a delightful read. The blog format of the book, while it is unconventional, also works well here. Even non-lawyers/law students will enjoy this book!
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Laugh-out-loud funny July 25, 2006
By Matthew
Anonymous Lawyer is laugh-out-loud funny and it perfectly captures everything my lawyer friends have told me about law firm life. It's also the first major novel written in the form of a blog. This book could really take off and become a huge phenomenon.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Laughing All the Way to the Bank -- With MY Candy May 14, 2007
This is one of the funniest books I've read this year. Sure, the whole "partner-who-wants-to-be-chairman" storyline of the book was a good one--but what kept me glued to the pages of ANONYMOUS LAWYER for four straight hours was the fact that I couldn't stop laughing.

Two paralegals chatting incessantly? Easy solution--punch one of the them in the face. Anonymous Daughter getting fat? Easy enough to solve--let Anonymous Wife take her in for liposuction. My favorite scene from the entire book, though, has to be this one:

"We had a student (intern) last summer who kept kosher. Or at least that's what she said. But anytime she got offered lunch at someplace exceptional, suddenly she wasn't kosher anymore. You asked her to go to a cheap Indian place down the street, oh, she can't, she's kosher. But if you wanted to drive up the coast for a long lunch at Nobu in Malibu, perfect, she'd eat anything. She'd eat raw shrimp wrapped in bacon with a glass of milk, off the naked stomach of a Palestinian, on Yom Kippur, if you told her it was expensive."

And it's lines like that that make the fictional blog of Anonymous Lawyer at the heart of the story both funny, realistic, sarcastic, and brutally honest. Oh, and the fact that the author, Jeremy Blachman, really does write the anonymous lawyer blog (anonymouslawyer dot blogspot dot com).

Wonderful read!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars More entertaining than I anticipated April 8, 2011
By A. Nye
All right -- I admit it. Despite the fact that it was wildly popular when it first began, I was one of those people who didn't really care for the blog Anonymous Lawyer.

It wasn't that the writing was poor or that the fictional hiring partner (remember in the beginning we didn't KNOW for sure that he was fictional) was unconvincing. Just the opposite.

The posts seemed all too real -- and that, my friends, was the problem. Reading about a ruthless, opportunistic, pompous, windbag of a hiring partner at a large law firm simply held no fascination for me. After all, I've been practicing law for nearly 30 years and I don't need to read about fictional accounts of these guys -- hell, I can give you have a dozen names of men just like the Anonymous Lawyer right now. And the truth is, I don't like any of them.

So I had few expectations when Jeremy Blachman sent me a review copy of his book a while ago. I didn't care for the blog and thought I'd probably feel the same way about the book. And I was right -- sort of.

After reading Anonymous Lawyer, I still didn't care for the fictional hiring jerk portrayed in the book. Surprisingly though, I did enjoy the book itself.

Unlike the typical whining, bullying and rude behavior I read about on the Anonymous Lawyer blog, the book rounds out the lawyer and adds a slice of "reality" by including an Anonymous Niece -- a person outside the legal sphere -- who brings an innocence to counter-balance Anonymous Lawyer's hard edges.

In addition, instead of just seeing Anonymous Lawyer as a complete ego-maniac, Blachman allows a glimpse of Anonymous Wife and his family. There's also the tried and true intrigue of a competition with The Jerk for the firm's chairman's job.
Read more ›
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Jeremy Blachman has spun a wickedly funny and outrageous story about life in a prominent Los Angeles corporate law firm. The boss in The Devil Wears Prada has nothing on our narrator, the Anonymous Lawyer, who serves as the hiring partner at his firm and has his sights firmly set on the Chairman position within the next decade. The reader gets an inside look at the motivations and desires of this evil partner, a man who despises his Anonymous Wife and her shopping habits, who disdains any lawyer who has more than the one allotted "outside interest," and who values profitability and career success above all else.

Blachman's shtick, which triumphs wildly, architects the novel a series of weblog entries by the Anonymous Lawyer. He sets up his blog with the help of Anonymous Niece, a college senior currently applying to law schools. The two share an email exchange about the blog content and fan mail.

The action takes place over a summer at the firm. Anonymous Lawyer, as hiring partner, manages the summer intern program (well, not in day-to-day aspects--there is a lower-paid nanny-type for that stuff). He's obsessed with his cubicle size in relation to that of other partners with a similar tenure, and his eventual goal is to smite The Jerk, who he views as the only real obstacle to his rise to the position of Chairman of the firm. He categorizes the interns and his co-workers as The Suck-Up, The Musician, The One Who Dresses Like A Slut, The One Who Missed Her Kid's Funeral, Foreign Guy, Black Guy, Harvard Guy, and so on. (This is a highly effective character naming technique--no crib sheet of character descriptions required!)

Blachman has written a fast-paced and thoroughly enjoyable modern satire. I laughed out loud both with and at Anonymous Lawyer. The book is certainly fun for anyone in the legal world, but Anonymous Lawyer's obsession with his co-workers and office politics render the action familiar to any cubicle-dweller.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Funny because it's tragically somewhat true.
Funny because it's tragically somewhat true.
Published 19 days ago by A. Yang
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Amazing book.
Published 9 months ago by Akouvi
3.0 out of 5 stars Promising but
This was good at first, but kind of petered out. Ok book if you can get a deal on it.
Published 17 months ago by Mrs. Peel
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful satire, a literary equal of Thank You For Smoking.
This is one of the best satire books I have ever read, though the ending is hard to understand and seems muddled. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Z. P. Scott
5.0 out of 5 stars I had already read the hardcover and LOVED it
This book is hilarious!! There is no way you can't laugh almost every chapter. I think whether you're a lawyer or not, you'll enjoy this book immensely. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Raousha
4.0 out of 5 stars A book to read
Great book! Very amusing.
Suitable especially for lawyers, cause the book describes working
In a big firm.
Buy it as a present...
Published on November 10, 2011 by MG
4.0 out of 5 stars Get some clues to make life easy in law firm
Narrate the real life in top tier legal firm from the partner's perspective.
A must-read for intending lawyers and law students.
Published on March 24, 2011 by Mr Fried
5.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious, Best Legal Humor I have read
This is a great read. I could not put it down. I am partner is in six attorney law firm and never had the opportunity to work for a Mega-Law firm or any firm on the AM 100 list... Read more
Published on May 5, 2010 by MiamiTechnoLawyer
3.0 out of 5 stars Lawyers ARE funny
The blog Anonymous Lawyer is funny; the book is funny, but funnier still, the book went from $14.99 in 2007 to $0.01 (plus $4.00 shipping) in just two years! Read more
Published on August 2, 2009 by R. Smith
4.0 out of 5 stars A very funny book
I don't know much about law offices or identify particularly with the people who work in them, and I tend to avoid epistolary novels: there's something about the format that... Read more
Published on December 18, 2008 by Debra Hamel
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More About the Author

The author bio tells you I'm not a hiring partner at a law firm, but I am the author of the Anonymous Lawyer blog (, a recent (2005) graduate of Harvard Law School, and I live in Brooklyn.

How I ended up writing this book: I graduated from Princeton in 2000, after writing sketches and songs for the Princeton Triangle Club but not really sure how to translate that into a job. I went to work in marketing at a software company, which was the best job I could have had at a software company, but not really what I wanted to be doing. Went to law school, thinking I'd buy myself three years to figure out how to be a writer. Started the Anonymous Lawyer blog during my second year of law school, the New York Times wrote a piece about it in December of 2004, and I ended up with a book deal. So here's the book. I think it's funny. I hope you do too.

I answer all of my e-mail, so feel free to write.


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