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By: Alan Dudley Alpass

Grass Roots

Pages: 158 Ratings: 4.8
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Would you expect a suburban Melbourne solicitor to settle brothel brawls, to locate dead bodies and to search for buried bullion? The author relates all of these adventures and more as he explores engaging stories of humanity, gleaned from decades of legal practice. From courtroom characters to family feuding, the author highlights the true, yet untold stories that show a surprising side of legal practice, told with simplicity and colour. As William Shakespeare said, “An honest tale speeds best being plainly told.” Whilst the author draws on client experiences from the humorous to the harrowing, the stories are respectfully related reflections upon client battles at the grass roots.

The author studied law at Monash University in Melbourne during the 1960s and 1970s, when the anti-Vietnam protests were at their zenith. There, his sense of justice was realised. In the 50 years since, his practice of law at the grassroots level has provided a wealth of stories from the humorous to the harrowing. Alan continues to practice law, to write, and to quietly work for professionalism and accountability within the legal profession. In his rare spare moments, Alan enjoys travel, classic cars and, in a change of pace, gardening.

Customer Reviews
4.8
22 reviews
22 reviews
  • Michelle

    A fantastic read - couldn't put it down! Written beautifully with such engaging stories. Can't wait for the next one!

  • Cherryl Heath

    The stories told by Alpass about cases handled behind the doors of his suburban legal practice are a myriad of surprises. But more than that, his selection is thrilling, sometimes funny and always captivating. I found myself reading faster and faster as my fascination accelerated my drive to discover the outcomes. Alan’s frankness about how he built his business adds a personal insight and maybe a lesson for some. Grass Roots is a read that will leave you hoping this is just the beginning of works by Alan Alpass.

  • Sandy Lodge

    What a fascinating read. Who would have thought your suburban solicitor could be involved in so much intrigue. A very easy book to pick up and consume. The author obviously knows his/her subject. Do yourself a favour and grab a copy

  • Jill

    This book is well worth the read. The stories behind the author’s clients are fascinating, entertaining and at times alarming. But what really stands out is the author’s love of the law, his empathy for those clients who find themselves in trouble, and the lengths he will go to in order to achieve the best outcome. Anyone who reads this book will also recognise some historic significant events. An easy read that I would recommend.

  • Dan

    A very well written book full of interest and intrigue. It is extraordinary that a suburban solicitor could encounter such an eclectic mix of clients. A very easy and worthwhile read.

  • Barbara Kramer

    I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book on several levels.

    Firstly, because it gave a wonderful insight into the relationship between the author and his clients, especially in light of the author's own experience of being personally exposed to the legal system. I felt that chapter enhanced the legitimacy of all the cases referred to and gave greater depth to each case.

    Secondly, with respect to the amazing variety of cases that were detailed in the book. I found some of the cases should be worthy of a separate book, such as the case of the yachting disaster. Each case was presented in an easy to understand and engaging way.

    The author's genuine love of his professional life and his empathy with people from all walks of life was easy to see written in each case and certainly made the stories come to life.

    I would love to read more....

  • Carmel

    I read the book with great interest and strongly commend the author for the ease of reading. I gained great insight into:
    the diversity of client legal issues walking through the door of a small suburban legal practice and the subsequent stress on a sole practitioner
    the empathy and respect shown to each client regardless of presenting issue
    the succinct case studies devoid of legal jargon, enabling me to understand the process from first contact through to case conclusion.
    the diversity of client emotions directed at the author and the subsequent impact on personal and family life.
    the depth of legal knowledge evident in each unique case.

    A really great read, so manageable in length. Thanks Alan.

  • Michael Halpin

    Grass Roots contains eloquent vignettes of the life of a suburban lawyer. It is both entertaining and an erudite guide for young practitioners. Warts and all approach crafted with the swagger of a raconteur. An enjoyable read.

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