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The Justice Game [Kindle Edition]

Geoffrey Robertson
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £11.99
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Book Description

Geoff Robertson was born in Australia, bu came to London in 1970. He made his name as the fearless defender of Oz magazine at the celebrated trial and went on to engage in some of the most newsworthy cases in recent history. He has defended John Stonehouse, Cynthia Payne, Salman Rushdie, Kate Adie, Arthur Scargill, Daniel Sullivan, Gay News, 'The Romans of Britain', 'Niggaz with Attitude', and a pair of foetal earrings. The book includes accounts of recent cases including the defence of a West London gym owner against the Prince of Wales, the Matrix Churchill affair, and the defence of the Guardian in the cash-for-questions affair. Hugely readable, funny, scandalous, revelator, this will become one of the great books about the law.

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Amazon Review

As a young Australian barrister, Robertson found himself involved in the Oz trial; a frothingly moralistic judge went to some lengths to jail three editors of an underground magazine, and was duly humiliated on appeal. Success leads to opportunity; Robertson has found himself at the heart of a sequence of crucial freedom of expression trials--the Gay Newsblasphemy trial, the attempt to bust the National theatre over a play in which male rape took place, the arrest of a painter whose chosen subject was bank notes. His account of his career concentrates on these, and on his own entire brilliance in them; he is not a modest man, nor is there any particular reason why he should be, especially given how sharp and witty his accounts are. Robertson has also been involved in other causes cèlebres--he knows all about the Michael X case, and a variety of other capital cases in the Caribbean, and is fascinating on the Matrix Churchill case and the various libel actions around the "cash for questions" sleaze row. Anyone interested in the issues is going to find this a useful book--but the average intelligent reader is going to find the account of courtroom battles a guilty pleasure in itself. --Roz Kaveney


"For all his reputation as a radical lawyer, flailing at the Establishment, he proves himself to be a believer" Independent "This wonderful book...reads like a John Grisham, infused with moral anger" Independent "Well-written, powerful...Robertson's work has changed the way government works, and made it more accountable...a good read for people of any age" -- Jack Straw New Statesman "Geoffrey Robertson Q.C. is one of those few fearless and romantic lawyers dedicated to reducing the difference between law and justice" -- David Jessel Scotland on Sunday "Compellingly told, entertaining, sometimes hilarious and always illuminating" -- John Mortimer

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 679 KB
  • Print Length: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage Digital; New Ed edition (25 Jan. 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004K6MEHC
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #113,121 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
36 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Justice Game 9 Jan. 2004
In this excellent book, Geoffrey Robertson QC gives a very informative and enjoyable account of some of the cases he has dealt with during his carrier at the Bar, spanning, at the time of the publication of his book, over three decades. These included a number of various topics: defamation cases, blasphemy and/or indecency trials, public enquiries as well as human rights missions and death row work.
The book is thrilling, at times it reads like the best detective stories, the accounts given of court proceedings and the anecdotes are often hilarious. Certainly, no prior knowledge of the law is required to enjoy his stories; however, those trained in law will find it especially interesting to see how some of the fundamental tenets of English law (such as the presumption of innocence or the impartiality of the judge) can go pear-shaped in practice.
Most importantly, however, Robertson QC is prepared to take a clear moral stance on human rights and civil liberties and to criticise or defend the law from this viewpoint. He emphasises that, as a member of the legal profession, he does have to abide by certain rules and has certain duties and does not accept anything less from others when engaging in the "justice game".
The book should be recommended to those interested in current affairs, legal issues as well as to those simply enjoying fascinating books telling the story of a person's professional life.
Dan Tivadar
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The most important game of all 3 Mar. 2011
By Tristan Martin VINE VOICE
Renowned Queen's Council Geoffrey Robertson, most recently seen defending WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, has written an amusing, insightful and passionate book on some of the more notable cases he has been intimately involved with.

Lady Diana, Matrix Churchill, the Oz trial and defending The Guardian newspaper against Neil Hamilton MP are just some of the headline-making stories that Robertson throws some personal light on. He shares what draws him to each case and how he analyses it; how events play out in court and the legal and civic ramifications - each episode given a personal slant from a witty and perceptive writer.

Geoffrey Robertson QC both condemns and celebrates the game of justice and values it primarily as a force for the individual to challenge the state, whether that be freedom of expression of a controversial artist, the battle against secretive intelligence agencies or at the most extreme end of the scale, someone challenging the death penalty.

No prior understanding of the English legal system is required as Robertson writes clearly, avoiding the restricted code of legalese. He articulates the importance of having evidence and accusations tested in the most robust, adversarial fashion, a right that is simply too important to give away, even under threat by the state's monster du jour, terrorism. In all, a fascinating read from a man who has been at the centre of legal cases of national importance for over thirty five years.
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26 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Abandon prejudice, all ye who enter here! 2 May 1999
By A Customer
I wasn't sure what to expect from this book when I received it as a gift. Fearing another in the series of books about the law which have proved to be mere self-serving rants taking large bites out of the hands that feed their progenitors, I actually lined up a couple of books of short stories to read between chapters or when I got too annoyed. Instead, I was delighted and absorbed. Robertson celebrates the legal system and shows how it is not the system that fails us but those who endeavour to cheat it. Justice is a "game" in the sense that if everyone plays by the rules, the right side will win. For someone of his profession and profile, Robertson is relatively self-effacing, in the context of what must have been considerable temptation to sound his own horn. And the cases are fascinating, and beautifully told. Most inspiring of all is the strong sense of justice, and above all, ethics, which pervades every aspect of his prose. Robertson clearly believes that the end does not justify the means, and that if rules are broken, in both the long and short term it is justice which suffers. Sometime the erosion of ethical standards makes me want to leave the law. This book makes me want to stay. Mr Robertson, you wouldn't be looking for a pupil, would you?
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Illuminating 8 May 2009
By Dancer
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
An excellent book. As someone with no particular knowledge of the law, this was a most enjoyable recount of the criminal side of the justice system. The author has had the good fortune to be involved in many very interesting cases even from his earliest days, so while I'm sure those committed to print are not representative of the stock in trade, they do raise excellent points and are very well narrated.

The author is biased, and in the nature of a QC presents his side of the case, I spotted several points that I know to be misrepresentations. Still, that was to be expected, and it helps the pace that he makes no pretence at being even handed.

I have no hesitation in strongly recommending the book, especially to someone like myself who was just looking for something out of their field for a bit of variety. The only question in my mind is whether it merits that fifth star.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential reading for civil libertarians 1 July 2010
This is a well-written, fascinating book. Geoffrey Robertson QC is a dominant figure in the fight against violations of human rights and civil liberties. He describes many of the cases in which he has been involved over the last 25 years and in doing so he gives clear and compelling analyses of the dubious actions of prominant individuals and government ministers. The reader will be deeply concerned to read about the steps taken by government ministers in cases that are said to be "likely to prejudice national security". The book is essential reading for anyone who has an interest in the law relating to civil liberties.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Insightful
Extremely well written. Unlike most legal memoirs, which tend toward an exercise in vanity, this tome raises and deals a multitude of serious issues in a readily accessible manner... Read more
Published 9 months ago by Gavin
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Looks good, but essay deadline means that this has not been read yet.
Published 12 months ago by Annette Scoging
5.0 out of 5 stars Informative, occasionally hilarious and beautifully written
For anyone who lived thoruhg the 60s and later, this is a fabulous and elegantly-written guide to key trials and the sometimes deeply unsavoury machinations of the law and... Read more
Published 14 months ago by PW
1.0 out of 5 stars dubious
I am dubious about this book. It seems to me that it is really about the author's view of himself and not the justice system. a rather self regarding and shallow book.
Published 16 months ago by Wolfie
5.0 out of 5 stars Insightful.
What a great book covering some of the most memorable cases of their generation. Well worth the money for an enjoyable read.
Published 20 months ago by Scott Winters
5.0 out of 5 stars It's only a game so, put up a real good fight
I bought this book purely on the strength of Geoffrey Robertson's work in relation to the 'Oz' trial, which he covers at length in Chapter Two. Read more
Published on 5 Jun. 2013 by Hal Marshall
5.0 out of 5 stars Amusing and alarmng
Good lawyers are good story tellers since their art is essentially narrative. Geoffrey Robertson the celebrated QC is no exception. Read more
Published on 12 Feb. 2013 by Samuel Romilly
4.0 out of 5 stars The Justice Game
When one of our most esteemed QCs calls justice a game it's clear the jig is up and we are in trouble. Or just maybe not if in fact it's always been that way. Read more
Published on 5 July 2010 by demola
5.0 out of 5 stars the justice game
absolutley brilliant, a great read for those who desire, seek , need justice...and also want to know why its sometimes fails..
Published on 8 July 2009 by Mr. J. Garrard
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