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47 of 52 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Top-notch info on the law school admission process
Applying to law schools can be a mysterious and daunting task. There are rankings, scores, essays, recommendations and numerous human factors involved. Sometimes the steps seem pointless and the decisions appear arbitrary. With this book, Montauk attempts to take some of that mystery out of the process by providing concrete information on what the schools are looking for...
Published on August 20, 2001 by Sean Harding

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26 of 34 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Fluff - not worth purchasing
One cant really expect to gain an unbiased opinion about law school admissions from someone who stopped practicing law, made a transition into management consulting, and then started an admissions consulting business.
Regardless of what Mr. Montauk says, there is no definite "method" that will secure you admission into a top law school. Great grades and...
Published on March 16, 2004


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47 of 52 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Top-notch info on the law school admission process, August 20, 2001
By 
Sean Harding (Southern California) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: How to Get Into the Top Law Schools (The Degree of Difference Series) (Mass Market Paperback)
Applying to law schools can be a mysterious and daunting task. There are rankings, scores, essays, recommendations and numerous human factors involved. Sometimes the steps seem pointless and the decisions appear arbitrary. With this book, Montauk attempts to take some of that mystery out of the process by providing concrete information on what the schools are looking for and specific advice on how to give yourself the best chance possible. He succeeds admirably.
I found the most valuable feature of the book to be the quotes from law school admission staff members at various schools. Virtually every topic includes input from admissions counselors and directors. And these aren't people from "Joe's J.D. Mill." They work at the top law schools in the nation. These are the people who make the decisions about who gets in to a top school and who doesn't. Their candid advice is invaluable.
As a whole, the book is well-written and informative. Some portions may be redundant to people who have already done a significant amount of research on law schools and the admission process. But it's all good information and it's useful to have it in one place.
While I don't recommend using this book as your sole source of advice, it's a fabulous starting point. If you're serious about going to law school, buy this book. It's well worth the price.
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent advice for those seeking to attend top law schools, November 22, 2002
By 
Amazon Customer (New York, NY, USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: How to Get Into the Top Law Schools (The Degree of Difference Series) (Mass Market Paperback)
I discovered this book last summer when I first decided to put myself through the law school application process (again). What a find! I only wish I had had it the first time around. There are so many little nuggets of advice that are useful to those applying to top 20 law schools. The emphasis on the importance of the LSAT cannot be missed. There's also a great section on how to get the best letters of recommendation from profs (although the sample letter Montauk includes seems a little unrealistic--it's almost four pages long). Also, don't worry if your resume isn't as solid as some of the sample ones included--those people are NOT your typical law school applicants.
Montauk does a thorough job of going through every aspect of the law school admissions process, including the most important one: Is law school right for you? The first chapter is invaluable in evaluatng whether you're making the right choice for yourself, since law school is a costly commitment (time, effort and money-wise). There are also countless data tables that examine statistics for each law school and a great chapter on law school rankings.
Overall, I would say that this book is worth every penny for those applying to top law schools (for those who are looking outside of the top tier, I would be more hesitant to recommend it since the data he includes is restricted primarily to top 20 schools).
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Book on the Subject, October 12, 2005
By 
Blah (New York, New York) - See all my reviews
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This is the only book you will need to help you apply to law school. The author covers everything from personal statements to Loan repayment programs at top schools. The author focus on top twenty schools but the information should be helpful to anyone. The best part is hundreds of quotes on all subjects directly from the deans of admissions at top schools. It includes quotes from the deans at every school in the top 15 in the U.S. News and world report rankings and a number of other institutions including Boston College, George Washington, USC, UCLA, and Boston University. This is particularly helpful if you are targeting one of these top schools. There are executive summaries at the end of the chapters if you don't have time to read the entire book. This work will help anyone taking the application process seriously to maximize their chances of getting into the best school they can.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An Essential Read for Serious Law Applicants, January 21, 2003
By 
JWE055 (New York, USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: How to Get Into the Top Law Schools (The Degree of Difference Series) (Mass Market Paperback)
I have spent a good deal of time wading through law school admissions guides. Too often, they are insufficiently researched and unscientific. Making generalizations about law school, admissions, and the legal profession can be tricky business, and Mr. Montauk recognizes this from the outset. This is not simply the view of one corporate lawyer, or law student, but instead a comprehensive analysis, informed by the experiences of law school professionals from every geographic region in America. He presents compelling strategies for marketing, based on the preconceptions (or prejudices, if you will) of law school admissions officers. He breaks down the process, and shows you the priorities and challenges faced by those who will determine your admissions fate. Understanding their perspective allows you to fashion the application accordingly, and offset the critiques that will be leveled against you during the decision-making process.
Mr. Montauk, of course, has his own opinions and presents them boldly. He begins the text with a discussion of the question, "why law?" He cites the undeniably large degree of dissatisfaction among attorneys, and draws some conclusions as to why this is so. Inexperienced undergraduates, he suggests, often make poor choices, and select law for naïve and psychologically self-serving reasons. He advocates working after college, in order to bolster experience and maturity. The point is well taken, but nonetheless one-dimensional. The undergraduate transcript is less significant for older applicants, which can put high college achievers at a competitive disadvantage. Also, for those of us who cannot benefit from the contacts and connections of an ivy-league degree, finding impressive employment immediately following college can be extremely difficult. These qualms aside, this is a phenomenal book. It is a must-read for ALL serious law applicants, whether they are Harvard-bound or not.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An Essential Read for Serious Law Applicants, January 21, 2003
By 
JWE055 (New York, USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: How to Get Into the Top Law Schools (The Degree of Difference Series) (Mass Market Paperback)
I have spent a good deal of time wading through law school admissions guides. Too often, they are insufficiently researched and unscientific. Making generalizations about law school, admissions, and the legal profession can be tricky business, and Mr. Montauk recognizes this from the outset. This is not simply the view of one corporate lawyer, or law student, but instead a comprehensive analysis, informed by the experiences of law school professionals from every geographic region in America. He presents compelling strategies for marketing, based on the preconceptions (or prejudices, if you will) of law school admissions officers. He breaks down the process, and shows you the priorities and challenges faced by those who will determine your admissions fate. Understanding their perspective allows you to fashion the application accordingly, and offset the critiques that will be leveled against you during the decision-making process.
Mr. Montauk, of course, has his own opinions and presents them boldly. He begins the text with a discussion of the question, "why law?" He cites the undeniably large degree of dissatisfaction among attorneys, and draws some conclusions as to why this is so. Inexperienced undergraduates, he suggests, often make poor choices, and select law for naïve and psychologically self-serving reasons. He advocates working after college, in order to bolster experience and maturity. The point is well taken, but nonetheless one-dimensional. The undergraduate transcript is less significant for older applicants, which can put high college achievers at a competitive disadvantage. Also, for those of us who cannot benefit from the contacts and connections of an ivy-league degree, finding impressive employment immediately following college can be extremely difficult. These qualms aside, this is a phenomenal book. It is a must-read for ALL serious law applicants, whether they are Harvard-bound or not.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic!, January 2, 2002
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This review is from: How to Get Into the Top Law Schools (The Degree of Difference Series) (Mass Market Paperback)
This book is absolutely indispensable for prospective law school students. It offers top-notch counsel on virtually every topic of importance to those considering a J.D. degree, including the pros and cons of pursuing a law degree to begin with. "How to Get Into the Top Law Schools" also provides an extremely thoughtful analysis of the available law school rankings and their limitations.
The bulk of the book, of course, is devoted to the application process itself, and it is clear that the author has devoted a significant amount of time speaking to the people who know the most about what really counts--the admissions directors themselves. I found their advice and the author's strategies and tips to be invaluable.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential Guidance, October 23, 2006
This book has served as a valuable guide through my undergraduate years. I purchased the first book before my sophomore year of college, and I believe the knowledge I gained has helped me to make the right choices in my endeavor toward law school. If you are an undergraduate student, and you aspire to law school, buy this book now. The longer you have it, the more helpful it will be during your preparation. If you are ready to apply, you will learn how avoid mistakes and put forth the best possible application you have to offer. The quotes from admissions people helped me to understand which schools I was best suited for and which ones to avoid. The path of law is a very important choice, and I appreciate that Mr. Montauk takes a prospective student from that decision process all the way through to tips for study success after the acceptance letter. As a side note, I had an urgent question about my law school application, and Mr. Montauk was kind enough to return my call (his phone number is in this book) on a Sunday. I wholeheartedly recommend this book!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Solid advice as long as you can stand the author!, March 23, 2004
By 
"ahugh81" (Hattiesburg, MS United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: How to Get Into the Top Law Schools (The Degree of Difference Series) (Mass Market Paperback)
In this 500 page exhaustive volume on getting into law school, the smug, arrogant Richard Montauk answers all possible pre-law jitters questions and really does what he sets out to do. The book walks you through every single step in the application process, and gives enough advice, strategy and examples to satisfy even the most inept applicant. Especially helpful are the hundreds of quotes from actual admissions people at top schools answering questions directly, as well as the numerous example essays in the index.
On a personal note, I read the book cover to cover, took the advice, and got into a top law school on my first shot. So props for Richard.
(...)Anyway, buy the book because it is honestly helpful, but please, please don't become like Richard!
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Indispensable, April 15, 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: How to Get Into the Top Law Schools (The Degree of Difference Series) (Mass Market Paperback)
I've bought at least half a dozen books on law school, and this one stands head and shoulders above the others on the topic of admissions. It gives you very specific information about how to get someone to write you the best possible letter of recommendation, what your best essay options are, what to do if you're waitlisted, and so on. No book is packed with more or better information than this one, and it's useful regardless of the caliber of the schools you're applying to. Buying this book is your first step in taking the legal profession by storm.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great advice for getting into the top schools, November 29, 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: How to Get Into the Top Law Schools (The Degree of Difference Series) (Mass Market Paperback)
I've read a number of books this fall about getting into law schools but find this one to be the most useful and comprehensive. It's apparent that Montauk has spent a lot of time speaking with the various admissions directors, and the advice he shares has really helped me tailor the approach I'm taking in applying to different schools. I also got a lot out of the chapters of interviewing and essay-writing. And I appreciated Montauk's thoughtful critique of the law school rankings. The book is an extremely helpful resource.
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How to Get Into the Top Law Schools (The Degree of Difference Series)
How to Get Into the Top Law Schools (The Degree of Difference Series) by Richard Montauk (Mass Market Paperback - January 1, 2001)
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