Friday, October 24, 2008

The Nine You Should Watch

"The Nine" was the Newberry book group selection for October. We have been reading at least one non-fiction title per year and previously had been concentrating on the Founding Fathers. This year we moved to the Judicial Branch and a modern examination of the people that make up the nine Supreme Court judges.

I don't follow the Supreme Court as much as I should. I had to agree with one of my fellow book groupers who said she thought at the beginning "is all he is going to write about is abortion?". Well, it's because the issue means so many things - privacy, religion, sex-discrimination - that is comes up in so many Supreme Court cases as people wage battle over a woman's right to choose.

I found Toobin's writing style accessible and appreciated the personal tidbits he threw in about all the judges. But it really seems to be Sandra Day O'Connor's show in this book and you come to understand how she lead the court during her tenure. I'll cut to the chase in case you don't feel like reading this one - the 2008 Presidential election is important because the new President may be able to appoint 2, and maybe 3, new justices. This will make a huge difference in the composition of the Supreme Court.

If you like non-fiction then read this. If you don't usually read non-fiction there might be other books out there on other subjects you would enjoy. I would not have picked this up if not for the book group but did appreciate our discussion and other people's insight into the workings of the Court.

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