Tuesday, December 18, 2007

The Street Lawyer

Long ago, Sandeep and I, in one of our myriad discussions, had talked about book reviews on Facebook. He had mentioned crack a book, and I had eagerly asked to be added in. After all these days, here is a review. Finally.

I have read most of John Grisham's books a while ago. However, a recent random TV program featured him, and on a whim, I decided to read some of his books again. It is convenient to see all his books in one place; the library's policy of unlimited borrowings makes it even more tempting to just take them all ! But I desisted, and came back with just The street lawyer. It is a fantastic story, quite fitting my current situation in life. Instead of documenting the story itself, let me write about what went through my mind so far....

It is just past midnight now, and I am halfway through the book with no signs of sleep. It brings back the familiar yet strange excitement of reading a good novel through the night. Long ago, on sundays, the brother and I would read late into the night. The father would arrive home close to midnight from his weekly games of cards, scold us for being up so late, shut off the lights and go to sleep. A few minutes later, we would be back at it! It has been several years now since such interest has been by a book!

This one is the story of a rich and successful lawyer. Rich in the pocket, poor in the soul. Circumstances bring him face to face with the reality of homelessness, and he delves into volunteering, then to practicing public interest law for a fraction of the salary he previously earned. In the process, he feels alive, inspired and fulfilled.

A few years ago, it would have just been another novel. But now, the references to Pennsylvania avenue, homelessness near the Capitol and the Potomac river all conjure up real images in my mind, from my recent trip to DC.

And in another thread, the futility and unfairness of money beyond need in the pockets of the few (read self), strikes some chords. My recent surge of (relative) wealth had gotten me thinking somewhat, and Grisham's character articulates these thoughts extremely well.

Half the book still remains, and it is already 1: 51 AM. I am looking forward to the rest of the morning, and to finishing this one on a high. Something tells me I will be thinking about this long after.

I am reminded of Dorothy Boyd's statement to Jerry, when she quits the high paying agency blindly reposing faith in him - Most of all, I just want to be inspired, Jerry.

And, I want to be inspired. Something tells me I will be tonight.

ps: Blogger spell check actually corrected 'practised' to 'practiced'. How strange ! I still remember my English teacher, Mrs Geeta:
Practice with a c, if used as a noun. Practise with an s, if used as a verb.


sandeep said...

welcome sir, good to see you write. Get inspired and inspire more around you !

Harini Sridharan said...

Nice personal touch to a book review :).

bubbles said...

"Rich in the pocket, poor in the soul."

:-). nicely written!

Haritalk said...

Thank you all. Hope to write more reviews.