Alameda County
Bar Association

ACBA Book Review: Scorpions 
ACBA Book Club

Every month, a group of ACBA members gathers to discuss this month’s reading selection.  We alternate between fiction and non-fiction, and try to choose books that have at least something to do with the law.  We really do talk about the books – also, of course, we drink wine, eat cookies, and get to know each other. 

ScorpionsScorpions by Noah Feldman:  This book is a fascinating discussion of the US Supreme Court during Franklin D. Roosevelt’s terms of office.  Of course, this period includes some of the lions of the bar –  Felix Frankfurter, William O. Douglas, Hugo Black – and others of equal stature if not fame.  What struck us particularly was the amount of venom some of the justices had towards other justices, and how deeply political the Court was (and is?).  It was also fascinating to read about the impact of world events, and the justices own political ambitions, on the Court’s decisions.  It’s a thick book and seems a little daunting, but most of us found it quite readable.  Recommended.

Next meeting:  May 6, Monday, at 5:30 pm at the ACBA, and the book is Doing Justice by Preet Bharara.  Wine and cookies are always served. Contact Tiela Chalmers ( for more information and to RSVP.