Sunday, July 18, 2010

Review: The Partnership, A Novel by Steven J. Harper

The Partnership, A Novel by Steven J. Harper

Book Description:
Debut novel from the author of the true-crime award winner "Crossing Hoffa: A Teamster's Story" "The Partnership" opens a window into a secret world. A mysterious death, illicit romantic liaisons, courtroom drama, and crises of personal conscience frame a titanic struggle at the nation's most lucrative law firm. A twenty-first-century legal thriller with a twist, "The Partnership" reveals what happens to rich and powerful insiders as the business school mentality extends its tentacles across a once-noble profession. The themes resonate; "The Bonfire of the Vanities" still burns. Albert Knight has reached the pinnacle of power as one of the "magnificent seven"-leaders of the international legal powerhouse Michelman & Samson. Only one step remains: Knight and his archenemy Ronald Ratkin are front-runners to replace the Executive Committee's retiring chairman. Knight and Ratkin were once best friends, but that was long ago. Despite their twenty-year animosity, each has embraced the firm's transformation to a bottom-line business and the stunning wealth it produces. As the price of success, they endure and inflict profound personal damage along the way. When gifted trial lawyer Ronald Ratkin's $100 million client defies protocol by interrupting the sacrosanct Executive Committee meeting, all seven attorneys are suspicious. The news, Ratkin suspects, could upset his ongoing billion-dollar trial, send stocks plummeting, and destroy his client, his law firm, and his personal wealth. But the wily Ratkin has a foolproof plan. Or will his own greed and that of his fellow partners undo him?

About the Author:
Steve's is an adjunct professor at Northwestern University and a contributing writer for "The American Lawyer." His first novel, "The Partnership," is a legal thriller that was published in May 2010. His blogs is "The Belly of the Beast" at

He has written two non-fiction books. "Crossing Hoffa: A Teamster's Story" (Borealis Books/Minnesota Historical Society Press, 2007) received the Chicago Tribune's award as one of "BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR" and won honors at the LONDON, NEW YORK, HOLLYWOOD, and NEW ENGLAND BOOK FESTIVALS. It's the true-crime story of his father's two-year tangle with Jimmy Hoffa from 1959 to 1961.

"Straddling Worlds: The Jewish-American Journey of Professor Richard W. Leopold" (Northwestern University Press, 2008), chronicles the life of a mentor who was a leading educator and historian. Steve wrote the book while spending every Sunday morning with Leopold during the final two years of his former professor's ninety-four-year life.

Steve is a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers and retired recently after 30 years at a large international law firm, Kirkland & Ellis LLP, which he joined upon graduation from Harvard Law School (magna cum laude). He received B.A. (Phi Beta Kappa and with distinction) and M.A. degrees in economics through a combined program at Northwestern University.

Here's What I Think:
I think I have found another genre to add to my list of faves. Law-firm based books seem to really grab me and make me finish the books. They are so full of drama from the lives of the attorneys and from the cases they are trying. This book is a thriller, to say the least. It is always fascinating to see how people react when millions of dollars are on the line, and their conscious comes into question. If you like the courtroom drama surrounded by the lives of the players involved, you will like this novel. I will warn that there is some language in this book - not superfluous, just there.

BUY IT! You can buy your own copy on Amazon

Disclaimer: Although I did receive a copy of this book from Jennifer Prost Public Relations, I was in no other way compensated to write this review.


  1. Thank you so much for stopping by the Sunday Summer Social! It's our first week so people are just finding it. Hopefully more friends will find it and join in as the weeks go by.

    Debbie @

  2. Great review! I am adding this one to my wish list.....

  3. Hi!

    Thanks for stopping by and for following me. I am now following you on this blog. I love to read and look forward to reading your reviews of books.

    Have a great week!


I love love love love to hear what other people think - share your thoughts so we can start a dialogue!