Who should read a law school admissions book? Just every pre-law student who cares about getting into their dream school, minimizing debt, and having a successful legal career.
If none of that applies to you, then you should stop reading right now. See ya never.
On a serious note, these books offer practical, real-world insight from admissions officers and lawyers who have already gone through what you’re about to. So take their proven advice and run with it to gain an edge on your peers!
It’d be outright reckless to not take their advice. The logic of winging your entire law school experience because you didn’t feel like reading a book doesn’t work out well.
So get wise by picking up one, or all three, of the books mentioned below. Then take action to not only avoid costly mistakes, but to become a highly sought after candidate.
Using the wisdom in these books, you can increase your admissions chances tenfold!
Most Helpful Books For Pre-Law Students
1. How To Get Into The Top Law Schools by Richard Montauk
If you’re an ambitious hustler who has dreams of attending somewhere like Stanford Law, don’t mess around with any admissions book from the public library.
Do it right: get this book specifically constructed for undergrads striving to get admitted to the top law schools in the US.
The author lays out why top law schools are incredibly attractive, as they are competitive:
The reason it is so difficult to get into these schools is clear. The value of a law degree from a top school is immense. Graduates of top schools earn salaries that are, on average, double or triple (or more) of what graduates from lesser schools make. Increased salaries are not the end of the story. Greater career choice, increased job security, more interesting work, and numerous other benefits also result from a top law degree, so it is no wonder that so many people want to get into the best school they can manage.
For those who are up to the challenge, getting into the best law school you can is simplified with this guide. You’ll learn how to market yourself to schools, write a persuasive essay, ace interviews, and choose the right university, among other gems.
Funny thing is I’ve actually worked one-on-one with the author, Richard Montauk, when I was a college junior obsessed with going to law school.
Why did I call him first and eventually go through his expensive coaching calls? Because the content in his book made a significant impact in advancing my law school admissions strategy.
You don’t need to pay him for coaching, but you do need to read this book—especially if you want to go to a top 14 law school.
2. The Ivey Guide To Law School Admissions by Anna Ivey
This admissions guide comes from none other than Anna Ivey, the former dean of admissions at a top five law school—The University of Chicago Law School. In other words, like the most qualified person ever for answering admissions questions.
She masterfully takes the readers through how admissions officers think, points out how to improve your chances, and uses examples of actual applications to prove her points.
While Montauk’s book does include specifics, Ivey’s is broken down into easier to consume chapters of how to impress with your essay, resume, interviews, and more.
Even if you’re well read on this topic, Ivey’s book is a must read to get the edge where you’re application is lacking.
The fact a former head of law school admissions at a spectacular school has a book out should be motivating enough.
If you’re smart, you’ll read it three times over to soak in all the useful content. I would!
3. One L by Scott Turow
This book is the odd out being that it’s not focused on improving your admissions chances.
Instead, reading One L tells the true story of covers an entirely different topic: what it’s really like to be a first year at Harvard Law.
Where it’s relevant is you’ll then be able to answer the questions, should you go to law school? Would you enjoy it? Is it right for you?
These are the answers you better know if you’re going to invest, give or take, three years and hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt to become a lawyer.
I won’t spoil the book too much. But when the classes are overly demanding and the pressure mounts, some first year law students can’t handle it.
Wouldn’t you know what it’s like at the nation’s top law school before you try to get into one? That’d make sense. Read One L and reflect on if this is the path for you.
If it isn’t, you just saved yourself from misery. If it is, you’ll walk away with further clarity that you’re entering the right career. Both are equally valuable given whatever side of the coin you fall.
Law School Preparation Pays Off
By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail. ― Benjamin Franklin
It happens time after a time. A young undergrad or working professional decides, once and for all, to attend law school.
But they don’t take the necessary steps to win. And the way you come out victorious in the law school admissions cycle is by getting accepted to your top schools, receiving scholarships, and having the leverage to choose where you’re going to school.
Here’s the difference.
The average applicant looks at applying as a checklist. “Oh, I have to do this, ugh. Ok I’ll just put this together. Let’s hope for the best!”
The winning applicant looks at applying from an entirely different vantage point. They see it as a full-encompassing personal marketing strategy that’s geared at every angle so they shine in the best light. Their resume, recommendations, personal statement are all put together with purpose.
It’s obvious why they come out with the most acceptance letters, and go to the most prestigious schools.
Are you going to win or lose? It’s a choose of preparation.
So read one of the books above and you’ll be more likely to win.
Related: Why I Turned Down Harvard Law School