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Ivy Briefs: True Tales of a Neurotic Law Student Paperback – December 2, 2008


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Ivy Briefs: True Tales of a Neurotic Law Student + One L: The Turbulent True Story of a First Year at Harvard Law School + Law School Confidential: A Complete Guide to the Law School Experience: By Students, for Students
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Atria Books; Reprint edition (December 2, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0743288394
  • ISBN-13: 978-0743288392
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.5 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (55 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #700,724 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

First time author Kimes is entertaining and funny in recounting her three years at one of the country's premier law schools. A smart young woman with a good, but not always engaged, sense of perspective, Kimes jumps from the University of Wisconsin to Columbia Law School on the wings of a spectacular showing on the LSATs. Once there, she faces the predictable sadistic professor, hypercompetitive fellow students and, of course, rampant elitism. Kimes is happy to treat with an equal measure of humor the highly stylized courting dance between summer law clerks and mega law firms, as well as the foreboding horrors of the bar exam. Though some stories seem hyperbolic and re-created conversations can be suspiciously pat, Kimes captures with accuracy the gestalt of the law school experience. Kimes did get a job at what she calls "Lavish Law Firm." But she eventually left to join the Make-a-Wish Foundation, which may be her final comment on the world of big-time law. The self-deprecating wit, catty observations and healthy sense of the absurd with which Kimes describes her approach-avoidance reactions to the world of law school raise the book above the ordinary. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"A must-read for anyone contemplating law school; and for those who have already graduated, a sidesplitting review of the law school experience -- torts and all." -- Karen Quinn, author of The Ivy Chronicles and Wife in the Fast Lane

"Martha Kimes's candid tale of attending Columbia Law School is Legally Blonde meets One L. Told with sweet self-awareness and pervasive wit, I couldn't help but cheer Kimes on as she faced every daunting law school challenge, transforming herself from fearful Midwesterner to cool and confident Ivy League grad. Ivy Briefs makes me want to hug Kimes...and then hire her as my attorney." -- Jen Lancaster, author of Bitter Is the New Black and Bright Lights, Big Ass

"With pitch-perfect dialogue and witty observations, Martha Kimes delivers a funny and charming look at the trials and tribulations of law school. I give Ivy Briefs an A." -- Alison Pace, author of Pug Hill and Through Thick and Thin

"Martha Kimes has written a One L for the next generation. Ivy Briefs is a great addition to the reading list for anyone even thinking about law school." -- Jeremy Blachman, author of Anonymous Lawyer

"The self-deprecating wit, catty observations and healthy sense of the absurd with which Kimes describes her approach-avoidance reactions to the world of law schol raise the bok above the ordinary ." -- Publisher's Weekly

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Customer Reviews

The book is easy to read, enjoyable, entertaining.
Amazon Customer
I highly recommend Ivy Briefs to anyone who's ever been to law school, plans to go to law school -- if you've ever heard of law school -- read this book.
LoveBooks
The book is simply AWESOME and I can't wait to read her next one!
K. Harris

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By M.J.M. on January 7, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I am a pre-law advisor. For years, I recommended that my pre-law students read the classic law-school memoir: One-L, by Scott Turow. Several of my students who have gone on to law school have told me, though, that reading One-L actually hurt them, because it scared them so much. They also found it somewhat inaccurate (probably because law professors are rethinking their use of the Socratic method since Turow's time). My new recommendation: Ivy Briefs. In fact, I will be making Ivy Briefs required reading in any class that is even somewhat related. It provides a look into how lawyers are socialized but it certainly won't scare anyone: Ivy Briefs had me laughing aloud.

In short, after graduating from University of Wisconsin with a degree in psychology, Kimes floundered around about what to do with her life. Out of default, as she says, she went to law school. In fact, aided by a phenomenal LSAT score, she got into and attended Columbia. Because her decision had been made in haste, however, when she went, she didn't know what torts or commercial outlines or hornbooks or Law Review or Moot Court were. Ivy Briefs describes how she learned these lessons and went on to a successful career at Lavish Law Firm in NYC.

This is a must-read for anyone contemplating law school.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By L. Vonbiela on July 5, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I just finished my first year at a Top 20 law school, and it is downright terrifying how well Martha captured the experience. I couldn't put the book down. I had to see what she would say or do next. I even found myself laughing out loud (thankfully I did not read the book in public). This was the perfect book to inject some much needed humor into a challenging situation! It was utterly hilarious, and helped to put a more sane perspective on things. And, unlike One L, it covers the second and third years of law school and all the rites of passage that come with those years. And the dreaded Bar Exam. Oh, joy!

I absolutely loved the book.
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19 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Pam Lilley on May 21, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I give you the types of readers who would enjoy this book.

The LSAT Ace: With an ego inflated by his 180 score, he thinks the law school battle is already won. Safely and humanely, Kimes will take his ego down a few notches before The Gunner gets his chance.

The current law school student: Kimes's book is perfect ammunition to fire at the loved ones in her life. "You see? It's not just me!" she proclaims, stabbing the book in the direction of anyone who dares to tell her to just chill out.

The regretful non-lawyer: Looking back on her education, I, er, I mean SHE regrets that she didn't aim higher and often wishes she'd gone to law school. Kimes detailed reflection on her education in law erases my, er, I mean HER regret as she realizes that studying law isn't something she ever would have been passionate enough about to become successful, as Kimes was. No, the passion had less to do with studying briefs than it had to do with studying Chris Noth in his briefs.

Written with humor and heart, Ivy Briefs has wide appeal.
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13 of 17 people found the following review helpful By C. Nanavati on May 14, 2007
Format: Hardcover
As someone who has considered going to law school on and off, I can genuinely say I've never gotten a more honest (or entertaining) look at law school as "Ivy Briefs," and I have a cousin who's a lawyer.

As we journey with Martha through the hallowed (read, under construction during year 2) halls of Columbia, we meet the Prepsters (you went to *public* high school), the Gunner (tenacious question answerer, likes to meet you at the door after the test to dissect it and throw in something you don't even remember on the exam to mess with your head) and other colorful characters. Your jaw drops at the kind of treatment you get as a summer intern being wooed for post graduation work at a Luxurious Law Firm, and shudder in fear with Martha as she takes the Bar.

I've long been a reader of Kimes' blog, The Random Muse, and couldn't wait to read the book. It was definitely worth the wait.

This is required reading for anyone contemplating Law School, or was a fish out of water at an upper tier school, or just likes a good memoir read.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Blah on June 17, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I am attending Columbia Law and this is a pretty accurate if a little dated(laptops are everywhere now for example) representation of law school life. I found the book hilarious as I have meet basically the smae people that Kimes describes. Most of the info is general enough that even non-law students should enjoy this book but it will be especially hilarious to students. Kimes book is entertaining, easy to read and hard to put down.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Sambo Gonzales on August 8, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Martha can really write. This is a very funny book about the dreary learning of law. She brings alive the Columbia School of Law with its snobby students - the cretinous offspring of inherited wealth, its boring professors who recite, year after year, the opinions of one Court of Appeals or another, and the long, long hours of study required to embed the rote learning into her brain. The scene describing the New York Bar Exam is priceless with the pigeons landing in front of her to leave their mark on the floor and the fork-lifts doing construction work behind her while she tries to concentrate on the differences between Multistate Law and New York law. The excessively long hours demanded by the big-name law firms have the effect of reducing the large starting salaries to a low hourly rate that would make me think twice about entering this profession. A marvelous book!
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