The 10 Best Law Textbooks
This wiki has been updated 15 times since it was first published in July of 2018. Whether you’re in law school or need to learn about the practice for your business or academic major, you’re sure to benefit from one of the textbooks on our list. We’ve included selections that focus on various aspects of the legal world, all aimed to help students absorb complex material and pass exams, with a few practical guides thrown into the mix for further elucidation. When users buy our independently chosen editorial selections, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki. If you'd like to contribute your own research to the Wiki, please get started by reviewing this introductory video.
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May 19, 2020:
Law is a broad and extensive field that encompasses many specialized areas of practice, so we thought a list comprised mainly of general overviews as well as a few functional texts would be best. So you'll find introductory titles like The Study of Law and Law 101 alongside rigorous ones like International Law and Constitutional Law: Principles and Policies. These sweeping volumes are then supplemented with The Curmudgeon's Guide to Practicing Law, a text recommended by esteemed universities to get students briefed on what's to come, Getting To Maybe, an insight into how to excel at exams, and The Bluebook for legal writing.
We swapped the ALWD Guide to Legal Citation for The Bluebook because we felt the latter is more valuable to students on the whole. While neither is a fun read, The Bluebook prescribes the most widely used legal citation system in the United States and is compiled by the Harvard Law Review Association, the Columbia Law Review, the University of Pennsylvania Law Review, and the Yale Law Journal. This makes it the best bet for those who want to be as thorough as possible. You can still get away with using alternatives like the ALWD Guide, but be aware that it disagrees with Bluebook on a few matters.
We also brought on International Law at the expense of Essentials of Health Policy and Law, which is still a must if that is your chosen field. We felt that in an age of increasing globalism, however, something like International Law would be more relevant thanks to its breadth of subject matter. It works in tandem with business law textbooks as well as volumes from other related fields and contains an expanded treatment of the relationship between international and domestic law for a deeper comprehension of litigation abroad and at home.