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A Civil Action (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 27. August 1996

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  • Taschenbuch: 512 Seiten
  • Verlag: Vintage; Auflage: Reprint (27. August 1996)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 0679772677
  • ISBN-13: 978-0679772675
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 13 x 2,2 x 20,3 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 4.6 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (221 Kundenrezensionen)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 191.292 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)
  • Komplettes Inhaltsverzeichnis ansehen

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In America, when somebody does you wrong, you take 'em to court. W. R. Grace and Beatrice Foods had been dumping a cancer-causing industrial solvent into the water table of Woburn, Massachusetts, for years; in 1981, the families of eight leukemia victims sued. However, A Civil Action demonstrates powerfully that--even with the families' hotshot lawyers and the evidence on their side--justice is elusive, particularly when it involves malfeasance by megacorporations. Much of the legal infighting can cause the eyes to glaze. But the story is saved by great characters: the flawed, flamboyant Jan Schlichtmann and his group of bulldogs for the prosecution; Jerome Facher, the enigmatic lawyer for Beatrice, who proves to be more than a match; John J. Riley, the duplicitous, porcine tannery owner; and a host of others. It's impossible not to feel the drama of this methodical book, impossible not to grieve for the parents who lost children, and impossible not to share Schlichtmann's desperation as he runs out of money. A Civil Action reads like one long advertisement for a few well-placed Molotov cocktails. (But that wouldn't make for a very long book, now would it?)


"Whether in truth or fiction, I have never read a more compelling chronicle of litigation." --John Grisham

"A page-turner. Rich and vivid. . . eventful and gripping." --The New York Times

"Once you start A Civil Action, you probably will not be able to put it down." --Washington Post Book World

In diesem Buch (Mehr dazu)
The lawyer Jan Schlichtmann was awakened by the telephone at eight-thirty on a Saturday morning in mid-July. Lesen Sie die erste Seite
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen

Von Ein Kunde am 14. Januar 2000
Format: Taschenbuch
This legal thriller, A Civil Action, recounts the events of a large case during the eighties. It is a story that is pieced together by a notable legal writer, Jonathan Harr. During the trial and before during the discovery period he follows the lawyers, who play apart of the case, and the eight families who were injured and filed suit against two major national corporations. The novel begins be explaining the situation the families all go through. In each of the families at least one family member is diagnosed with leukemia, a rare and very dangerous disease. The families all meet one way or another through there connection to leukemia. They learn much about leukemia and decide that the cause for their family member's illness is the water from their hometown in Woburn, Massachusetts. Through the help and friendship of a local reverend the families decide to bring their problems to court. They hire a firm with great respect in Boston, which lends a young, bigheaded lawyer named Jan Schlichtmann. At first believes that Woburn is to confusing and to expensive, but quickly he changes his mind, he is drawn into the case. As the story progresses Schlichtmann faces terrible financial and emotional problems. He starts spending every breath on the case. His lawfirm goes through a horrible downfall and they go deep into debt. The strain of the case also eventually affects Schlichtmann mentally. He becomes trapped by the case constantly searching for a way out but always returning to it. Harr was extremely detailed throughout the book, almost to the point of confusion. He immerses the reader, not only with legal terms and procedures but scientific terms dealing with groundwater pollution and medical terms dealing with leukemia and other illnesses caused by the water.Lesen Sie weiter... ›
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Von Ein Kunde am 11. Januar 2000
Format: Taschenbuch
Anand Dharan Ms. Smith English I-7 January 6, 2000 One bleak night, Jan Schlichtmann wakes up to the sound of a sheriff, having come at last to repossess Schlichtmann's beautiful black Porsche. At this point, Schlichtmann could care less; buried in debt and struggling to fend off insurance companies, defense attorneys, and a cold, sadistic judge, the loss of his car is irrelevant in the scheme of things. As he looks ahead, all he can see is a long, winding trial; a trial to decide a case that he should have never taken on nearly a decade ago. Like many dramas, Jonathan Harr's A Civil Action, a legal thriller about the elusiveness of justice, begins in medias res, when Jan Schlichtmann, the plaintiff attorney for a group of disheartened, working-class families, has his car repossessed for failing to pay the bills; he is bankrupt, we are told, because of the case he is working on. By transporting us into the middle of things, Harr gives the reader something to think about as he flashes back to the beginning of the fiasco. Harr continues with an account of the unusual leukemia incidences in Woburn, Massachusetts, a working class suburb that was once dominated by the plants of two industrial behemoths: W.R. Grace and Beatrice Foods. Grace and Beatrice are both accused of dumping the toxin trichloroethylene (TCE) into the city's water wells, causing abnormally high rates of acute lymphocytic leukemia. His description, although long, is hooking, and the reader soon finds himself immersed in the Woburn scenario, living the lives of Ann Anderson, Jan Schlichtmann, and a dozen other characters who know that the fate of the Woburn case will make or break their careers.Lesen Sie weiter... ›
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Von Ein Kunde am 15. Oktober 1998
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
Jonathan Harr's twenty-year chronicle of the crests and troughs of "A Civil Action", which pits small town Americans against Big Business industries, ably wears many hats: It depicts the emotional drama of the families of a cluster of leukemia victims. (Try to keep a dry eye over the story of Robbie Robbins' dying declaration to his mother, "We'll meet in the back left corner of heaven.") It serves as a full-blown, but altogether captivating, civics lesson, a step-by-step narrative of a high-profile, high-stakes civil case from the decision to sue to final judgment. Even as a work of non-fiction, it has all the suspense and high drama of a Grisham novel (at least the good ones -- see my review of "The Street Lawyer", August 25, 1998). Some may feel that the book lends to the public fervor that the American Civil Justice system is neither civil nor just. But "A Civil Action" is not a wholesale indictment of the American legal system. Like true great story-telling, it sets forth the facts and lets you be the judge.
Although told primarily from the perspective of the Plaintiffs' lawyer, Jan Schlichtmann, Mr. Harr does not attempt to paint Mr. Schlichtmann as an "Atticus Finch-like" ubermensch, fighting for all that is just and good. Rather, he appears to be motivated less by the tragic circumstances of his clients than by a titanic ego and the quest for the ultimate contingency fee. He depicted as extravagent and superficial. But at the same time, he goes for broke (quite literally) for his clients.
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