Book recommendation: The Stay-Behind Cave by Boris Starling

Lord Of The Flies meets Flowers In The Attic. December 1940. As the German army closes in on Gibraltar, 16-year-old Rassie Elder and five friends stumble across the most secret place on the Rock. They were never supposed to know about this place, let alone find it. And now they’re trapped inside, Gibraltar has fallen, and they’ll stay alive only as long as they can remain undetected. But danger is not just outside the cave. It’s in there with them too. For there is no darkness greater than that of the human heart. And the terror is just beginning…. The greatest World War Two story never told. Until now.

Available from Amazon.

August 13, 2014 · Tim Kevan · Comments Closed
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Chinese walls and palm tree justice

BusyBody was talking about her case at chambers tea yesterday which involves a student appealing a decision by his college to expel him. ‘It was a complete kangaroo court,’ she said.

‘I’ve always loved the image that conjures up,’ said TheVamp. ‘You know, a huge kangaroo of a judge and all the little joeys coming up before him and with none of them able to sit still for a second. All bouncing up and down on the spot trying to make their submissions.’

‘It’d make it quite hard to keep their wigs on,’ said TheBusker.

‘It’s Chinese walls which make me chuckle,’ said UpTights. ‘I just imagine a huge wall of takeaway boxes separating two halves of an office.’

‘Palm tree justice has always done it for me,’ said TheBusker. ‘Makes my mind wander to hotter climes than this.’

‘I always liked the idea of lawyers going on fishing expeditions,’ said OldRuin.

‘Always brightened up even the most dreary day in court.’

‘As for skeleton arguments,’ said OldSmoothie. ‘They make me think of two skeletons stepping out of a closet, squaring up to each other and then one of them saying “I’ve got a bone to pick with you”.’

BabyBarista is a fictional account of a junior barrister practising at the English Bar, written by barrister and writer Tim Kevan. For more information and to read posts from the last few years visit babybarista.com. Cartoons by Alex Williams, author of 101 Ways to Leave the Law.

August 12, 2014 · Tim Kevan · No Comments
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Monday morning with Alex Williams’ cartoons

qccartoon
This cartoon is by Alex Williams who draws the Queen’s Counsel cartoons for The Times and in numerous books including The Queen’s Counsel Lawyer’s Omnibus. He offers almost all of his cartoons for sale at £120 for originals and £40 for copies and they can be obtained from this email info@qccartoon.com.

August 11, 2014 · Tim Kevan · Comments Closed
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Weekend video: Pamela Meyer: How to spot a liar

August 9, 2014 · Tim Kevan · Comments Closed
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Book recommendation: Gray Mountain by John Grisham

One week ago, Samantha Kofer was a third year associate at New York City’s largest law firm. Now she is an unpaid intern in a legal aid clinic deep in small town Appalachia. When Lehman Brothers collapsed, she lost her job, her security, her future. As she confronts real clients with real problems, she finds herself a world away from her past life of corporate fat cats and fatter bonuses. This is coal country. Meth country. The law is different here. And standing up for the truth means putting your life on the line.

Available from Amazon.

August 6, 2014 · Tim Kevan · Comments Closed
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Learned usher

I was against TheCreep today and as always he was going his best to slime up to the judge.

‘Your honour, as I have already indicated to your learned usher, this case is likely to last half a day.’

The judge stopped TheCreep there. ‘Alfred,’ she said looking down from the bench to the older gentleman sitting in front of her. ‘Did you hear that?’

Alfred smiled as if he could guess what was about to come.

‘This young man tells me you’re learned.’

‘TheCreep, thinking he had gone too far and that the judge was about to criticise him, then said, ‘Er, I’m sorry, Your Honour. It was a slip of the tongue, what I meant…’

As soon as the words left his mouth it was clear to us all that this had been the wrong thing to say. The words hung in the air and were then followed by a silence as the judge looked down at TheCreep as if measuring up exactly how she was going to hurt him. Then she said very slowly, ‘MrCreep, one minute you were suggesting that Alfred here was learned. Now you appear to be suggesting that he is not. Which is it to be?’

‘Er, er…’ TheCreep was lost.

‘Well, come on then,’ pushed the judge.

‘Er, well, I…’

‘MrCreep, even for someone as keen as yourself on the art of brown-nosing, you are particularly ill-equipped at ingratiating yourself through simple charm. For your information, Alfred has a law degree and is extremely learned and from now on I decree that everyone will address him as ‘The very learned usher Alfred. Do you understand?’

‘Yes,’ said TheCreep looking shame-faced.

‘Now, I suggest you get on with introducing your case.’

‘TheCreep then stood up and said, ‘Your Honour, this is an all or nothing case.’

TheJudge then whispered under her breath at a level which we could all hear, ‘Or for you MrCreep, nothing.’

Which not surprisingly, turned out to be true.

BabyBarista is a fictional account of a junior barrister practising at the English Bar, written by barrister and writer Tim Kevan. For more information and to read posts from the last few years visit babybarista.com. Cartoons by Alex Williams, author of 101 Ways to Leave the Law.

August 5, 2014 · Tim Kevan · No Comments
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An academic point

‘Penny for your thoughts?’ It was one of the pupils addressing OldSmoothie in the clerks’ room this morning.

‘You’d need a lot of pennies to be able to afford the benefit of my thoughts,’ he replied.

‘I would have said it was one penny too much myself,’ said UpTights.

‘Anyway, how can I help?’ said OldSmoothie.

‘I’m getting stuck on an advice on an area of law which has been covered by so many academic articles that I don’t know which ones to include.’

‘Young man, we are paid a premium in this job to give advice. Plain and simple. Not to quote dissenting judgments or the rambling thoughts of some Oxford don. Tell your client what the law is and what should be done. The rest, literally, is academic.’

‘I once had a pupilmaster whose advice always amounted to which way he felt in his stomach the court of appeal would go on a particular issue,’ said OldRuin.

‘Made him a lot of money, that stomach.’

‘Shame OldSmoothie can’t bill according to the size of his stomach,’ said BusyBody. ‘He’d be a very rich man indeed by now.’

BabyBarista is a fictional account of a junior barrister practising at the English Bar, written by barrister and writer Tim Kevan. For more information and to read posts from the last few years visit babybarista.com. Cartoons by Alex Williams, author of 101 Ways to Leave the Law.

August 5, 2014 · Tim Kevan · No Comments
Tags: , , , ,  · Posted in: Uncategorized

Monday morning with Alex Williams’ cartoons

qccartoon
This cartoon is by Alex Williams who draws the Queen’s Counsel cartoons for The Times and in numerous books including The Queen’s Counsel Lawyer’s Omnibus. He offers almost all of his cartoons for sale at £120 for originals and £40 for copies and they can be obtained from this email info@qccartoon.com.

August 4, 2014 · Tim Kevan · Comments Closed
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Weekend video: Career Advice on becoming a Judge by Lord David Neuberger (Full Version)

August 2, 2014 · Tim Kevan · Comments Closed
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Book recommendation: The Business of Judging: Selected Essays and Speeches: 1985-1999 by Tom (later Lord) Lord Bingham

This classic account of how the judiciary cannot act neutrally, but must act politically, now in its fifth edition. John Griffith’s controversial book has been fully revised and updated to consider the latest developments in relations between politicians and the judiciary: Michael Howard’s conflict with the judges, miscarriages of justice, the Criminal Justice Act, the increased use of Judicial Review, the effects of anti-trade union legislation of the 1980s, and so on.

Available from Amazon.

July 30, 2014 · Tim Kevan · Comments Closed
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