In Law School: Getting In, Getting Good, Getting the Gold, Thane Messinger pulls no proverbial punches as he guides a potential law student through the entire law school experience from pre-application to post-graduation.
More About the Author
Messinger is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin Law School, author of The Young Lawyer’s Jungle Book: A Survival Guide, now in its second edition, and Editor-in-Chief of the Fine Print Press, which has also published Morten Lund's Jagged Rocks of Wisdom series, which includes Professional Advice for the New Attorney, The Memorandum, and Negotiation: Mastering the Art of the Deal.
Inside the Book
First of all, this is a substantial book (374 pages); each subject is handled thoroughly, and it is a book meant to be digested, as the author notes, in small doses.
The book sets its instructive, no-nonsense tone from the start with suggestions on how to best approach the material. Within just a few paragraphs, the reader has already been let in on a law school secret: the importance of skimming. And so the instruction begins.
Once the reader has given the book a good once-over, she can focus on the topics most important to her at any given time -- and again, make no mistake, this book is comprehensive, designed to accompany the student from before she even submits a law school application to the job hunt after graduation. Even substantive law school subjects are treated separately so the student can begin to see the overall, broader picture, which is sometimes difficult to grasp for a 1L.
Chapter titles include the following:
- Thinking Like a Lawyer
- No, Really, Why Law School?
- The LSAT: The Right Mindset
- But Don’t Top Law Schools Teach Law Better?
- Part-Time Law
- Top 50 or Bust
- The Business of Studying Law
- Learning as a Team Sport
- A Peek Into the World of White Shoe Law
- Good Enough for Government Work
Rating & Recommendation
I can't stress enough how comprehensive this book is for an aspiring law student, and then for a law student, and then for a law graduate. I love the author's frankness and honesty throughout, and especially useful are tips regarding class preparation, case briefing, outlining, note-taking (or lack thereof), study groups, and learning the law -- these are all topics that are unique to the law school experience, and unless you’ve already attended law school, you should know about them before setting foot in a 1L classroom.
I give this book five stars and highly recommend it to anyone considering law school; get a copy of this book before you begin the application process, and it’ll take you clear up through your 3L year and beyond. It's simply an invaluable resource that will take a lot of the mystique and uncertainty out of law school for its reader. I absolutely wish it would have been around when I was starting law school.