Research Guide on Exam Taking Resources

Need help preparing for exams? Consult our online research guide for a bibliography of books and other resources you may find useful for exam preparation.

Have You Registered for a Casemaker X Account Yet?

One of the “perks” of becoming a member of the Washington State Bar Association (WSBA) is that you gain access to Casemaker, a subscription legal research database that has state and federal primary law (cases, statutes and regulations). Recently, the WSBA extended free access to Casemaker to law students and faculty of Washington State law schools via the Casemaker X database.

In addition to the state and federal primary law available via Casemaker, Casemaker X also provides access to the WSBA deskbook series through the Casemaker Libra platform. Students often find the Washington Civil Procedure and Washington Appellate Practice deskbooks (among others) especially helpful for drafting exercises.

Register for Casemaker X via Be sure to use your email account to register. If you have questions about Casemaker X or the WSBA deskbooks, contact the reference desk at 398-4225 or

Back Issues of The Lawyer

The Lawyer is the official magazine of Seattle University School of Law, and is published for alumni and friends of the law school.” Perhaps you remember something you saw in an old issue of The Lawyer; or you want to look back at the history of the law school and the people who worked at and attended it. Back issues of The Lawyer are available online at the law school’s Digital Commons site. See (or remember) what was happening back in Tacoma when ties were wide and hair was big.

Looking for Foreign Law?

It can be difficult to understand the structure of codes and case law from foreign jurisdictions, to say nothing of locating those materials in English translation. The Foreign Law Guide, available through the SU Law Library, can help. Organized by country and topic, this database will help you find descriptions of foreign legal systems as well as links to online translations of primary and secondary materials.

Recommended Titles from the Walkover Collection

Richard Flanagan, The Narrow Road to the Deep North
(Vintage International 2015 – Winner of the Man Booker Prize 2014) LAW-Walkover Collection (2nd Floor) PR9619.3.F525 N37 2015

The title of Richard Flanagan’s sixth novel comes from a 17th-century Japanese classic, a little book by the poet Basho that mixes a prose travel narrative with haiku in its account of a long journey on foot. Whether that journey has any meaning, whether there’s anything beyond putting one foot in front of the other . . . well, that’s another question entirely. Flanagan’s Dorrigo Evans, a young medical officer, seems at first to travel a different path. For Dorrigo — the name comes from a town in New South Wales — is a prisoner of war, among the more than 9,000 Australians who in 1943 slaved on what was called the “Death Railway.” This grave and lovely novel bears little resemblance to the one the French writer Pierre Boulle offered in the early 1950s in “The Bridge Over the River Kwai.” He has something much deeper than revisionism on his mind.

His unit surrenders to the Japanese in Java, and in postwar Australia he will become famous for his work in the prison camp, for the leadership that ensures the survival of most of the men in his command. And he hates his fame — hates the idea of virtue in general and of his own in particular, hates the idea that those months of struggle have come to define his entire life.

Flanagan has done something difficult here, creating a character who is at once vivid and shadowy. In his long postwar life, Dorrigo will see his own moments of heroism as if performed by someone else. Flanagan will cut back and forth in Dorrigo’s life: the prison camp, his childhood, a prewar love affair, and then half a century forward. Only on the book’s last pages do we understand the moment in camp that irreparably damaged Dorrigo’s life, and only then will we see that this trauma has little to do with the camp. Flanagan manages these shifts in time and perspective with extraordinary skill. I suspect that on rereading, this magnificent novel will seem even more intricate, more carefully and beautifully constructed. And those formal demands aren’t the only ones it makes.

Basho wrote that “Days and months are travelers of eternity,” and Flanagan’s book, like the poet’s own, will push us far down that path. This “Narrow Road to the Deep North” is both unforgiving and generous, a paradox that should earn it some fame of its own. (Review excerpted from Michael Gorra, New York Times Sunday Book Review)

Karen Joy Fowler, We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves
(Plume 2014 – Shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize 2014) LAW-Walkover Collection (2nd Floor) PS3556.O844W4 2013

What is the boundary between human and animal beings and what happens when that boundary is blurred are two of many questions raised in Fowler’s novel, the narration of a young woman grieving over her lost sister, who happens to be a chimpanzee.

Rosemary recounts her family history at first haltingly and then with increasingly articulate passion. In 1996, she is a troubled student at U.C. Davis who rarely speaks out loud. She thinks as little as possible about her childhood and the two siblings no longer part of her family. But during a Thanksgiving visit home to Bloomington, Ind., where her father is a psychology professor, that past resurfaces. Rosemary recalls her distress as a 5-year-old when she returned from visiting her grandparents to find her family living in a new house and her sister Fern gone. Denying any memory of why Fern disappeared, she claims to remember only the aftermath: her mother’s breakdown; her father’s withdrawal; her older brother Lowell’s accelerating anger until he left the family at 18 to find Fern and become an animal rights activist/terrorist; her own continuing inability to fit in with human peers. Gradually, Rosemary acknowledges an idyllic earlier childhood when she and Fern were inseparable playmates on a farm, their intact family shared with psych grad students. By waiting to clarify that Fern was a chimpanzee, Rosemary challenges readers to rethink concepts of kinship and selfhood; for Rosemary and Lowell, Fern was and will always be a sister, not an experiment in raising a chimpanzee with human children. And when, after 10 years of silence, Lowell shows up in Davis to describe Fern’s current living conditions, he shakes free more memories for Rosemary of her sibling relationship with Fern, the superior twin she loved, envied and sometimes resented. Readers will forgive Fowler’s occasional didacticism about animal experimentation since Rosemary’s voice—vulnerable, angry, shockingly honest—is so compelling and the cast of characters, including Fern, irresistible.
A fantastic novel: technically and intellectually complex, while emotionally gripping. (Kirkus Reviews)

New and Notable: Just mercy : a story of justice and redemption

Just mercy : a story of justice and redemption.
New Books KF373.S74A3 2015

“A powerful true story about the potential for mercy to redeem us, and a clarion call to fix our broken system of justice.  Just Mercy is at once an unforgettable account of an idealistic, gifted young lawyer’s coming of age, a moving window into the lives of those he has defended, and an inspiring argument for compassion in the pursuit of true justice.  Author  Brian Stevenson is the executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative in Montgomery, Alabama, and a professor of law at New York University Law School. He has won relief for dozens of condemned prisoners, argued five times before the Supreme Court, and won national acclaim for his work challenging bias against the poor and people of color. He has received numerous awards, including the MacArthur Foundation ‘Genius’ Grant.” – from the publisher

The Walkover Collection

The Walkover Collection was created on behalf of Professor Andy M. Walkover, a much loved and a deeply admired member of the University of Puget Sound School of Law faculty. Andy died of cancer in 1988. Andy’s appreciation of people revealed itself in the way he recommended just the right books to his friends.

The eclectic Walkover collection consists of some of Andy’s favorite novels including many classics of American and European literature. The collection also includes works donated by Andy’s friends and family that reflect his taste and personality. The Walkover collection continues to grow through the generosity of the Andrew Walkover Library Fund established by Barbara Walkover. The fund allows the library to purchase new titles including a selection of Pulitzer, National Book Award and Man Booker prize winners. The law library invites you to use and enjoy the Walkover collection. As stated on the memorial plaque above the Walkover collection, “Nothing would have pleased Andy more than to know you’re now taking even a short journey from law school into the broader world of wonder by leafing through one of these books.”

The Walkover collection is located adjacent to the recreational reading collection under the library stairs.

CALI Lessons

As you are starting your new classes, we’d like to remind you about CALI lessons.  CALI lessons are interactive, computer-based tutorials on a wide range of legal subject areas:  Lessons are completely free for our law students.  They are useful for mastering material during the semester and for exam preparation.

When registering a new CALI account, you must use our school’s authorization code to create the account. The CALI authorization code was included in the password packet your received at orientation. You can also get the authorization code at the Reference Desk. You only need to use this authorization code once. After that, you will use the email and password you created when you signed up.  CD-ROMs with the lessons are also available at the Reference Desk.

Casebooks in the Law Library

The law library owns one copy of each casebook in current use for all first-year classes.  The copies are shelved in the Reserve section of the library and can only be checked out for two hours (or used in the Reserve area without being checked out).  Unfortunately, the law library does not purchase casebooks for upper division course–too many classes and casebooks (as all law students know) are quite expensive and constantly publish new editions. 

Our Faculty Scholarship

Do you ever wonder how productive Seattle University’s law faculty is as far as scholarship?  If so, some law professors at Roger Williams Law School have a website that ranks law faculty scholarship.  The data is a bit dated but SU Law ranked number 11 in terms of “per capita productivity.”  Pretty impressive, huh?