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Published on Apr 13, 2015

BOOK REVIEW

BUGLE AND YARRINGTON

By James James

BLUE MARK BOOKS LTD

ISBN: 978 1 91036 901 2

www.bluemarkbooks.com




HOW TO WRITE AN ENTERTAINING NOVEL ABOUT THE LAW WITHOUT BEING BORING

An appreciation by Phillip Taylor MBE and Elizabeth Taylor of Richmond Green Chambers

Let’s face it! Most novels about the law are boring and appeal to about 1% of the population if you are lucky enough as the author to find a publisher willing to take you on. Enter the firm of ‘Bugle and Yarrington’ (yes another collection of silly names to make up a firm of solicitors in practice… and we have plenty of those in London as it is) or the “Founding Fathers” as they are nicely tagged.

The novel start and ends with Christmas so there is at least a bit of festive cheer at the beginning and end of the story and what a good story it is, too. We are not going to give much away so we will keep it as secret about the storyline as the notorious author James James is about himself (herself), having just escaped from his Major Major role presumably… at least we actually have had a recent Judge Judge so as Richard Littlejohn might say, you really cannot make this stuff up.

Spanning the last fifty years, the big legal novels have centred around writers of the day like Henry Cecil (not the racing man) and his ‘Brothers in Law’ series of easy to read comedies which gently took the mickey, and then the great John Mortimer’s Rumpole which took to the legal stage for a good three decades and entertained us as only Mortimer could.




Then, there has been a gap to fill with the arrival of the politically correct brigade of which John was not really ever a member as a decidedly “old Labour man” but he was a great storyteller and probably part of his own time. Now we have James and he shows great promise in a difficult arena at a difficult time when you have to be so careful what you say (and write).

What the author has achieved here is a very modern form of satire but not really in the ‘Private Eye’ mould. There are so many absurdities in the law that he will have plenty of material for the years to come. Probably Roger Thursby and Horace Rumpole were never cynics but skeptical enough to gauge the human condition with the sympathy one needs when dealing with both colleagues and clients.

And to ‘Bugle and Yarrington’ there is the love story of course which has the touch of lightness throughout. We didn’t find it a ‘laugh out loud’ book but it is one which was very difficult to put down and the short chapters were a boon.

James James might consider changing his name by deed poll but he is surely here to stay and the sub title of this most entertaining sets of stories within stories…. “love, law and laughter in London” sums the novel up nicely and we look forward to further treats on how the modern novelist sees the modern London legal world: it is great fun to read and the book cover is the giveaway.

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