Monday, February 1, 2010

The Art of Racing in the Rain

Law and literature can encompass a lot more than To Kill a Mockingbird, Bleak House, and a stack of thrillers and mysteries.

Consider The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein (PS3569.T3655 A88 2009 at Good Reads). (See the Author's website.) In this bestselling novel, set in Seattle, we see the progress of a child custody battle. The narrator observes all the family members and sees the dispute develop. He's even present for some of the father's meetings with his lawyer, since they take place at the sidewalk tables of a coffee house on Capitol Hill. It's unusual for the narrator of a courtroom drama not to be allowed in the courthouse (did I mention the narrator is a dog?), but he is otherwise an amazingly astute observer and he does a good job putting together the missing pieces.

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