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Lust for Justice - The Radical Life & Law of J. Tony Serra Paperback – October 22, 2010


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 292 pages
  • Publisher: Lightning Rod Publications; lst edition (October 22, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0615386830
  • ISBN-13: 978-0615386836
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 5.9 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #188,821 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"This book, Lust for Justice -The Radical Life & Law of J. Tony Serra, is the story of his life. I am glad there are a few (and there are only a few) audacious miscreants such as he around. He gives meaning to the word courage. I remember Race Horse Haines, one of the great lawyers of our times, who said that when he faces a troublesome problem, he asks himself, "What would a real lawyer do here?" When I face a tyrant judge or an overpowering opponent, I ask, "What would Tony Serra do here?" But rarely do I have the courage to follow the answer. -Gerry Spence --Book Forward

"The art humanizes him. I came to like him as a result of the art. The art made it all make sense for me" -Ann Yeomans, Archetypal Therapist, Santa Fe, N.M. --pre-copy of the book

"The art humanizes him. I came to like him as a result of the art. The art made it all make sense for me" -Ann Yeomans, Archetypal Therapist, Santa Fe, N.M. --pre-copy of the book

"The art humanizes him. I came to like him as a result of the art. The art made it all make sense for me" -Ann Yeomans, Archetypal Therapist, Santa Fe, N.M. --pre-copy of the book

About the Author

Paulette Frankl, daughter of Austrian-born world-renowned Art Deco designer Paul T. Frankl, has been a writer and artist all her life. In Lust for Justice Frankl's writing and art goes to the essence of J. Tony Serra to portray him in all his paradoxes and complexities. Ms. Frankl has lived and worked in the U.S. and Europe as a photo-journalist and graphic artist. Her courtroom art has been aired on CNN, NBC, CBS, ABC, Fox TV and others. She has worked as a performance artist in mime and magic. She is currently working on a book about her intimate association with Marcel Marceau. Ms. Frankl lives in Santa Fe, N.M. with wild birds and wild fantasies. Her websites are lustforjustice.net and pauletteart.com

More About the Author

Paulette Frankl, daughter of Austrian-born world-renowned Art Deco designer Paul T. Frankl, has been a writer and artist all her life. In Lust for Justice Frankl's writing and art goes to the essence of J. Tony Serra to portray him in all his paradoxes and complexities. Ms. Frankl has lived and worked in the U.S. and Europe as a photo-journalist and graphic artist. Her courtroom art has been aired on CNN, NBC, CBS, ABC, Fox TV and others. She has worked as a performance artist in mime and magic. She is currently working on a book about her intimate association with Marcel Marceau.

Ms. Frankl lives in Santa Fe, N.M. with wild birds and wild fantasies. Her websites are lustforjustice.net and pauletteart.com

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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This is a book that is very hard to put down.
Catherine Sobredo
Written in a direct exciting style, the author allows us to accompany her as if we were present in courtroom drama, strategy sessions, and personal encounters.
Ro King
LUST FOR JUSTICE is, as are Paulette's paintings, a brilliant work of art.
Cathy Scott

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Cathy Scott on November 18, 2010
Format: Paperback
By Cathy Scott

Courtroom artist, and now author, Paulette Frankl spent 17 years following Serra--and tracking him down--from courtroom to courtroom. LUST FOR JUSTICE is a culmination of those years.

It was in one of those courtrooms, this one in Las Vegas, where I first met Paulette. It was 2000 and I was in Clark County District Court to cover the Ted Binion case--the first of two Binion trials--and Paulette was there to sketch and paint the goings-on for news outlets. We became fast friends. During a dinner downtown near the courthouse after a day in court, I vividly remember Paulette telling me about the book and her work-in-progress. I also remember her saying, "I'm not a writer." She undersold herself; Paulette is every bit a writer with a powerfully descriptive voice, as evidenced in the pages of LUST FOR JUSTICE.

During the Binion prelim hearing for the retrial of defendants Sandra Murphy and Richard Tabish, who were accused of murdering casino heir Binion, I met Tony Serra. He had taken Tabish on as a client after Harvard Law Professor Alan Dershowitz successfully argued before the Nevada Supreme Court for a retrial. Earlier, when a phone call came in to Serra's office asking Tony to consider defending Tabish, Paulette happened to be sitting in Tony's office.

"Take the case," Paulette told him. After all, she had first-hand knowledge after sitting through every moment of the first lengthy trial--the biggest trial, which ended in guilty verdicts, Las Vegas had seen in recent history. She believed the defendants needed a lawyer like Tony on their side. For the second trial, with Tony at the helm, the case ended in murder acquittals for Serra's client, Tabish, as well as co-defendant Murphy.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Tipster on December 15, 2010
Format: Paperback
Commenting on Paulette Frankl's book about Tony Serra entitled "Lust For Justice":

Recommendation: HIGHEST

Reading about Mr. Serra...for me it's kind like when you were a kid, and you first took a ride on the "Mr. Toad's Wild Ride" at Disneyland...

"It made sudden turns and often the vehicle would move at full speed towards an obstacle, which would move out of the way at the last second. At one point the vehicles on different tracks would head directly towards each other, giving the sense of an oncoming collision. It was a very stylized attraction and resembled a cartoon more than any other Disney ride." [Wikipedia ].

Paulette's drawings scattered about the book are magical, and catch his magic (she was magician once in Las Vegas,
and Tony believes in magic). The pictures can be both soothing and frightening, like the man can be. However,
its clear the sound and the fury, are harnessed to benefit the client. Many great boxers are gentle outside the ring.

With his brilliance, and "white tornado" energy, she describes how he moves obstacles, or blasts them, out of his client's way...snitches, circumstantial evidence, experts, bias...WHATEVER IS IN THE WAY OF HIS CLIENT'S FREEDOM, he will attack it, and run the risk, like few lawyers will, of impaling himself.

There is the radical Serra, or is he really a conservative??? His values run deep all the way back to the Declaration of Independence....Life, Liberty, and the Pursuant of Happiness.

There is the self-analysis at the end of the book that is Honesty...in brutal form.

There is the man who Gerry Spence testified for, and then stiffed, on an agreement to speak at Spence's Trial Lawyer College.

Cartoon character...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Ro King on November 22, 2010
Format: Paperback
This book is riveting throughout. Tony Serra comes alive as a person with a larger than life mission and personality. Everything is subsumed under his passion to provide justice for the underdog. Written in a direct exciting style, the author allows us to accompany her as if we were present in courtroom drama, strategy sessions, and personal encounters. Her art vividly shows the power dynamics between the defendant and the rest of the court with the protective kinetic passion of Serra as he actively lives his life purpose. We follow her in the unfoldment of the man, the era and the legal breakthroughs that define an age.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Tara S. Cunnings on November 3, 2010
Format: Paperback
I couldn't put the book down, I'm not a lawyer and so it was for me insight into an unknown world. Tony Serra's work is such an inspiration to read about in these times of fear, he knows what he believes in and he is strong enough to stand up for himself and others. Ms. Frankl is not only an excellent writer but her art work is genius she is able to express so much emotion into her sketches. this is a read everyone will enjoy.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A Book Review

Lust for Justice: The Radical Life and Law of J. Tony Serra

Paulette Frankl

Lightning Rod Publications. Santa Fe. 2010

Paulette Frankl is a courtroom artist who encountered Tony Serra in a trial then spent seventeen years observing his trials and his lectures to law students and lawyers. She sketched him in action many times, and a selection of these sketches is included in the book. Once, she was able to "interview" him with a regular question-and-answer process, but he usually dodged that format. Most of the book portrays him in action.

It's hard to describe the conjunction of talents: Serra's dazzling courtroom performances and Frankl's artistry in capturing his messages aimed at judges and juries as he defended men and women accused of major crimes.

Serra's talents include a powerful intellect, perfect pitch for language and poetry, a talent for philosophy and a memory that enables him to recall thousands of details of complex cases and to use them with devastating effect in the adversarial setting. His cross examinations of government witnesses are classical. He particularly enjoys cross-examining informants (snitches) who are testifying in return for either forgiveness or money. He can usually find inconsistencies and inflate them to apparent perjuries in the testimony of these witnesses. His disgust and contempt for this sort of witness and the government that uses them is profound.

He is also skilled at the cross-examination of expert witnesses and has been known to destroy their testimony totally, as in the case of the forensic pathologist Dr. Michael Baden.

Serra's personal life and private behavior are built upon the counterculture values of the 1960s.
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