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Legal Writing in Plain English, Second Edition: A Text with Exercises (Chicago Guides to Writing, Editing, and Publishing) Second Edition, Kindle Edition
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|Length: 286 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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- Part of: Chicago Guides to Writing, Editing, and Publishing (49 Books)
- Due to its large file size, this book may take longer to download
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About the Author
- Publisher : University of Chicago Press; Second edition (August 26, 2013)
- ASIN : B00EFVJ4RK
- Publication date : August 26, 2013
- File size : 23129 KB
- Print length : 286 pages
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Language: : English
- Lending : Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #174,347 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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Amazon's rating system is, unfortunately, about how well I liked it, not how useful it might be to others. To be fair (which is why I gave it a 3 instead of a 2), I have an MA in English Rhetoric and have spent my life in the writing/publishing world, so it does not fit my needs. I'm new to the field of law and hoped it would teach me the required elements of various briefs/documents. Out of a 240 page book, about 50 pages is devoted to what I sought (Appendix B - Four Model Documents on drafting an Appellate Brief, Motion, Contract, and a Research Memo). Appendix A is "How to Punctuate" which, ostensibly, if you're over 30, you learned in school somewhere along the line.
The remainder of a book is simply an advanced writing course with examples drawn from legal documents. A typical example would be that you are given a convoluted sentence which you then have to break into smaller, more succinct and understandable sentences. The advanced form of that same exercise is a convoluted paragraph in which you have to figure out what is being said and rewrite it to make it more clear and coherent. Other exercises involve interviewing lawyers and judges to find out their preferences in what they like to read as far as legal documents are concerned. The book also assumes you have access to a law library and lots of time to research. One example is: "Find a judicial opinion that takes several paragraphs before getting to the point."
Be more diligent than I was -- take a look at the Table of Contents from the "Look Inside" link, and even download a sample of it to your Kindle before purchasing. Apparently I simply looked at the reviews.
That's the disclaimer. But I still loved the book. It's largely written as a how-to, gives you tips to improve your legal writing, and is a resource that I'll continue to reference throughout my career.
If you'd like a quick read (with accompanying exercises to test your skill) this is a great book to have. Then, when you become more interested, you can nab the Redbook, Legal Usage dictionaries, etc. In sum, it's a great place to start.
One objection, though: Garner's answers in the back often deal with only the Easy exercise, not all three (Easy, Intermediate, Hard). I realize that giving answers to all three would lengthen the book, but the easy one is exactly that--easy. I'd like to see his Heller brief, or any of the harder ones just to compare. But that's only a minor annoyance. Otherwise, it's a real asset if you're interested in improving your legal writing. And you should be.