So in my previous post, I discussed a list of books to get, among other things, prior to starting law school. Well I’ve just finished 1L of a Ride and thought I’d share my thoughts.
First off, I really appreciate the effort that’s gone into the book. Between the survey’s Mr. McClurg has been having his students suffer through over the years that he’s included and the input of various law professors on different sections I’ve been pretty happy with it. The author also tries to keep you engaged, although the “lively” banter isn’t always what it’s intended to be, it’s a huge plus. The book could have simply been a “here’s the information, now let me put you to sleep” endeavor. Instead, it’s a pretty enjoyable read, with lots of unique insights.
Some of the points you should make sure you don’t miss include:
- Sit up front in class. A lot of us heard the T rule for sitting in undergrad and the same applies for law school. Students who sit at front have better grades.
- Be prepared for each class. This is a little more law school specific, but for each case you should have:
- Relevant facts
- procedural history
- rules adopted by the court
- Why the rule was adopted
- Substantive legal issues
- Who won
It also has a nice typed out transcript of a 1L class Socratic Dialogue, so you can get over some of the angst of what that experience will be like. Not to mention sections on habits of successful law students (the other is not only a law professor, but finished in the top 5% of his class in the 80s), general student well-being, tips for outlining/note taking, exams, legal research and writing, and what to expect from professors.
While no section is particularly long, in combination with a few other prep-books, I think it offers a great, and concise, guide to law school. The sections are nicely divided, so that you can easily reference them for whatever you need, when you’re one week away from class, need to deal with a particular issue, etc. I’m trying to come up with the best law school prep books list and review of each, so expect me to post about the other prep-book I got, Getting to Maybe soon too. You can also check out my fellow 0L blogger, Legal Rabbit, as she’s writing some law school prep-book reviews as well.