By Sarah Roussel-Lewis
The Young Advocate Series
The Art of the Interview: How Lawyers Talk with Clients
Discovery Techniques: A Practical Guide to the Discovery Process
Legal Writing: Mastering Clarity and Precision
By John Hollander
Toronto: Irwin Law, 2013
The Law Society of Saskatchewan Library has recently acquired part of the Young Advocate Series, which are handy guides to the following topics: Legal writing, discovery and interviewing. Lawyers interested in learning the basics of these topics should consider dropping by the library to pick one of them up.
They do contain a great many tips and techniques that permit the thoughtful junior lawyer to develop and advance skills essential to the profession. 1
These great resources by John Hollander were created to help new lawyers discover useful tricks-of-the-trade. Many chapters include examples, exercises and thoughtful questions. For example:
Select a standard interview session that you encounter frequently (perhaps a new client interview for one of your areas of practice). Prepare a list of topics you normally cover. Assume that the client is familiar with the jargon you would use and has experience dealing with people in your area of practice.
Now, review that list and adapt it to suit a new client who has no familiarity at all with the services you offer. Design several questions that probe behind the answers that you would ordinarily accept at face value from a client who is more familiar with the matters at hand. 2
Not only is the commentary interesting and relevant, but visually the books are quite appealing. The liberal use of bright colours and attractive graphics make these items stand out. Another attractive quality of this series is the use of easy-to-read language, making the topics much easier to digest. All three are under 200 pages and are small in stature, making them easily portable for lawyers who are always on the go.
One thing that could deter from the series is the faux dust jacket they have attached. The items are coil bound but they have added a page at the back that works as a dust jacket. It makes for a slightly awkward packaging which could get damaged very easily.
The content, being so general and simple, could also detract from the series. These items would be a good basis for young lawyers looking to get a quick look into a subject they aren’t experienced in. For a senior lawyer, these might be less helpful, as the topics are quite basic and do not delve deep enough.
These textbooks are available through the Irwin Law e-library in the Members’ Section and in print at our library. Please stop by the Law Society of Saskatchewan Library to check out these valuable legal resources. Call numbers: KF 311 .H73 2013, KF 8900 .H73 2013 and KF 240 .H734 2013.
In the Legal Sourcery book review, new, thought-provoking, and notable library resources are reviewed. If you would like to read any of the resources reviewed, please contact our library at firstname.lastname@example.org or (306) 569-8020. Let us know if there is a book you would like reviewed.
1. Hollander, John. Legal Writing: Mastering Clarity and Precision (Toronto: Irwin Law, 2013) at vii
2. Hollander, John. The Art of the Interview: How Lawyers Talk with Clients (Toronto: Irwin Law, 2013) at 70