Forever Rumpole

forever rumpoleForever Rumpole: The Best of the Rumpole Stories by John Mortimer, 3/5

Rumpole, an irreverent, outspoken and devastatingly sarcastic barrister, specialising in criminal law, is the scourge of judges but the delight of juries (who he entertains) and the criminal classes (who he generally gets acquitted).  The character is appealing, but I felt that the stories were lacking in complexity and substance.  Also, it’s challenging to respect a character who is portrayed as having the reputation, amongst criminals, of a guaranteed procurer of “not guilty” verdicts.  I’d rather read a story about the defence of an innocent, decent person than the defence of someone who’s only a petty thief and con-man and thus would never have committed the murder in question…

[Why I read it: I’ve been meaning to watch the TV show but just got around to the book first, thinking it sounded like fun.]

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