Ensiform's Reviews > Anonymous Lawyer

Anonymous Lawyer by Jeremy Blachman
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Apr 14, 2012

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bookshelves: fiction
Read in December, 2008

The novelization of a popular (and hilarious) blog, ostensibly by a hiring partner at a major LA law firm. The titular lawyer, whose obsessions with quality and power are much akin to the protagonist’s in American Psycho, is here made less venomous through a series of emails to his niece. At the firm, he vies for the Chairmanship with a rival he dubs “The jerk,” and worries after an associate finds out the blog is his. Thus a few plot conflicts are presented, and it climaxes when “Associate X” offers him dirt on The Jerk, which may (or may not) catapult him to the top.

It’s a pretty funny novel, but severely lacking in the truly nasty bits the blog offers (in the blog, AL evinces no empathy for cleaning crew, paralegals, or his wife, and delights in torturing them in small ways; that’s true here, but he’s a pale shadow of his online self, because the reader must sympathize with him over the course of a story). Also, a lot of the “plot” points are dropped along the way, as in the budding romance between the niece and an associate, or online flirting between AL and Associate X, which had no relevance to the main plot. And, I must admit, the final page is less than satisfying: AL is not only passed over as Chairman, he’s fired; but then he appears to be continuing to blog as if he became Chairman. I suppose he’s just keeping up the pretense, but it isn’t a very remarkable ending.
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