Hard Time & Nursery Rhymes: A Mother's Tales of Law and Disorder

Hard Time & Nursery Rhymes: A Mother's Tales of Law and Disorder

by Claudia Trupp
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

What kind of woman leaves three young daughters at home every morning to spend her days representing convicted murderers and rapists? That is the question criminal defense attorney Claudia Trupp confronts in this sharp and riveting memoir as she seeks answers—for herself and, mostly, for her daughters.

Every working mother faces the challenges of

…  See more details below

Overview

What kind of woman leaves three young daughters at home every morning to spend her days representing convicted murderers and rapists? That is the question criminal defense attorney Claudia Trupp confronts in this sharp and riveting memoir as she seeks answers—for herself and, mostly, for her daughters.

Every working mother faces the challenges of balancing work and home, but the nature of Trupp's work makes her juggling act all the more precarious—and at times hilarious and bizarre. Trupp's domestic anecdotes of life with her kids run parallel to narratives of her most memorable, and often unsettling, criminal cases, each providing a platform to explore broader issues such as faith, perspective, and charm. The navigation of radically different realms—the criminal courts and maximum security prisons where clients serve hard time, and the home front where children demand marshmallows for breakfast—provides thought-provoking and entertaining reading.

While the working mother has been a popular subject of fiction and self-help guides, this may be the only book offering a woman's deeply personal and unapologetic account of how embracing a challenging job while simultaneously guiding a family reaps unexpected benefits on both fronts. In a memoir that will resonate powerfully with all women, Trupp candidly conveys to the reader and to her daughters the struggles and rewards of the conflicting roles in her life, the joy she has found in being a mother, and the value of meaningful work.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

When criminal defense attorney Trupp leaves her home and her three daughters each morning for work in New York City, she trades one set of important demands ("marshmallows for breakfast") for the demands of her clients, most of whom are convicted murderers or rapists. This memoir is Trupp's explanation to her daughters: "why I choose to walk out the door each morning, despite their frequent pleas that I stay home," in order to step into the high-pressure environment of a courtroom, visiting prisons or even risking danger in the apartments of possible suspects. Trupp expertly reaches out to every working mother as she describes her day-to-day challenge of being in two places at once, struggles to keep up her pre-children physical appearance and relates a depressing experience at American Girl Place with her daughter where Trupp yearns for the simpler "quality time" that she spent with her own mother waiting in gas lines or running errands. This brashly frank memoir is packed with minute details of her work that will enthrall fans of legal thrillers, but may not hold the attention of readers who are simply looking for the story of how one woman balances family, hard work and having a quiet moment to herself. (Apr.)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Kirkus Reviews
A seasoned New York City criminal-defense attorney juxtaposes life defending hardened criminals with caring for her inquisitive daughters. Though outspoken and diligent in her work, Trupp admits that she is quick to cry. She wept her way through middling grades in college, defeats in court and difficult pregnancies, but her greatest challenges, she says, have come from defending extremely demanding legal cases then changing hats and returning home to devote time to her family. Trupp revisits some of her more controversial cases, beginning with the complex trial of alleged cop killer Stephen DeLuca. After that defeat, she became overwhelmed with a second maternity leave and the "mommy justice" she was required to hand down at home. Ice-cream socials, bake sales, puppies and bedtime stories run parallel with a female murder plot, a vicious stabbing incident and unsettling visits to Rikers Island Correctional Facility to review a prison gang-rape scenario. Trupp also sprinkles in stories of her childhood, early life lessons and times at home with husband Charlie, also an attorney. Employing raw, often unchecked emotional language, the author's intricate balancing act creates sympathy simply for its stark laboriousness. Though the criminals she steadfastly defends are thiefs, rapists and murderers, Trupp discusses how she has learned important lessons and found enrichment from her interactions with them. Will appeal to those familiar with the legal arena, but the machinations of criminal defense may go over the heads of many working moms.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781605296654
Publisher:
Rodale
Publication date:
04/14/2009
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
File size:
414 KB

Meet the Author

Claudia Trupp is a criminal defense attorney specializing in appellate litigation. She lives in northern New Jersey with her husband and three daughters.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >