What I have been reading lately
The conference (and the blog, and the teaching and the papers) have not prevented me from reading a few interesting books lately. Many of the books have been biographies, which I have come to appreciate. When when well written and crafted, they combine the best of journalism and fiction.
It has been a while, but one of the most captivating biographies I have ever read is that of former US Supreme Court Justice David Souter. Souter is an interesting figure himself. He was appointed by Bush sr, but sided systematically with the liberal wing of the Court – including in antitrust matters. My own impression is that he is just someone who deeply believes in the law and takes it very seriously. The carefully researched book does not disappoint.
In my attempt to understand what is going on in the country where I now live, I have read this year Sonia Purnell’s biography of Boris Johnson. It is a page-turner that confirms the impression that Boris Johnson gives on TV: i.e. that he is a lazy and incompetent dilettante.
Having devoured Boris Johnson’s biography, I was expecting the best of the long-awaited monograph on Richard Posner. Unfortunately, it has been one of the great disappointments of the year. Besides some gossip about his time as a student at Harvard Law School – it looks like Posner managed to terrify and alienate the faculty as a 23 year-old – I do not believe there is anything in the book that has not been said (more graciously) elsewhere.
Anyone interested in Posner should instead read the classic piece published in the New Yorker, which is a good example of journalism at its very best. The way Posner demolished the arguments against gay marriage is another must read/listen.
Our friends – and generous sponsors – from Hart Publishing sent us a review copy of UK Merger Control, written and Jonathan Parker and Adrian Majumdar. I have now found the time to take a look at it and I have to say I am most impressed by it. Congratulations to the authors on an amazing achievement!
On the to-read list, I have Choice, edited by Paul Nihoul, Nicolas Charbit and Elisa Ramundo. It is always refreshing to reflect on the introduction of new approaches and paradigms.