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My Brief Career: The Trials of a Young Lawyer Hardcover – 1 Apr 2004


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Short Books Ltd; 1st Edition edition (1 April 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1904095690
  • ISBN-13: 978-1904095699
  • Product Dimensions: 14 x 2.1 x 21 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,345,076 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

"An hilarious account of the splendid miseries of being a pupil in a barrister's chambers" -- John Mortimer

...well-written, in a style so close to Evelyn Waugh as to be almost pastiche... -- Jonathan Sumption, Sunday Telegraph (Review)

About the Author

Harry Mount is deputy comment editor on the Daily Telegraph. He trained to be a lawyer in the early 1990s. He lives in London. This is his first book. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

2.9 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

44 of 53 people found the following review helpful By john thomas on 11 May 2004
Format: Hardcover
Every young barrister spends their year of pupillage, following older barristers and learning the essentials of how to do the job. Advocacy can't be studied in books - the only way to learn is by experience. Harry Mount's legal memoir of his year as a pupil barrister is hilarious - every unbearable minute of it. As pupil to a succession of snobbish and patronising middle-aged barristers, he learns the many riduculous conventions of the bar like not shaking hands with other barristers, not talking during tea and wearing turned-up trousers and cuff-links in every shirt.
It's not serious of course - very little to do with the law at all in fact. But Mount is not trying to offer a genuine critique. He's in the entertainment business. This is a risible read and at times, really funny. Many lawyers dislike it because it presents a bad image of the bar and all its pompous history and etiquette. They fail to see the humour. Mount is not saying that all barristers are patronising, self centred, rude, arrogant and intolerant. He's just saying that most of them are!
As a profession that has yet to drag itself into the 20th century let alone the 21st century, there is much to be learned for all lawyers from this very entertaining volume. Its essential humour lies in its proximity to the truth, not its distance from it. My Brief Career is a great way to spend a few hours laughing out loud.
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30 of 36 people found the following review helpful By "edwardmarshalhall" on 20 May 2004
Format: Hardcover
Delightful, disgraceful, delicious and a really good laugh. This is a seriously witty book that had me giggling on page after page. Funnier than Mortimer, more stylish than Denning - best book about the silly side of the law for a long time. Has great appeal!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Gcab on 31 Jan 2014
Format: Paperback
I wish the author had a brief career rather than inflicting this drivel on an unsuspecting public.No research or clue on the subject.Silly boy.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Ken Cohen on 2 July 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
What a disappointment! Having just read the same author's recent excellent book "How England made the English" I was expecting something really brilliant, but his heart obviously just wasn't in it.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Antic on 8 Jun 2013
Format: Paperback
Laughably bad. Don't waste your money. It's clear his inattention to detail meant he was not cut out for life at the bar. However his use of hackneyed cliche also suggests he ain't much of a writer either.
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9 of 13 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 1 July 2005
Format: Paperback
I enjoyed reading My Brief Career even though it only took me only 3 hours! One point to note with this book is that the letters are large and pages are well indexed so it is a short read.
It is, at times, very funny (almost laugh out loud funny) and offers an interesting insight into pupilage. I am not sure however if it accurately reflects what most people experience during their time at the Bar. Furthermore, throughout the book I got the feeling that many of the criticisms Harry Mount was making were essentially premised on the fact that he chose a profession that didn't fit his personality - hence he found pupilage rather dull. He is clearly much better suited to being a journalist.
That said, I have given this book 4 stars. It is very readable. It is light reading - great for a plane flight or holiday. I don't think it would put me off the Bar but it certainly gives an interesting insight into what it could me like.
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