A Higher Duty
A Higher Duty opens in London, 1960, when a shocking death at Cambridge University sets into motion a low-key investigation of the case and a swift but surprising ruling which has far-reaching results. Not all cases are so quickly resolved. A Higher Duty reveals an inside look at the cases and personalities of a set of legal Chambers of the British Bar. Chambers are primarily run by educated and often privileged white males who were seen to represent traditions of integrity. But justice is not always blind, but merely self-serving. Other challenges arise when social changes are proposed, such as taking a female pupil into chambers when, of course, they can’t invite her into The Club. One prejudiced barrister refuses to accept a Jewish pupil but tolerates the female one because her father is a judge who will assure high level work for their Chambers. Sadly, the oldest, most experienced member is being voted out because his only wealth is his vast knowledge of law and how to approach a case, but that doesn’t pay the chamber fees. When a simple divorce case takes a scandalous turn that threatens ruin for many, the Head of Chambers is galvanized into covert action to save face, but is it already too late? Peter Murphy’s novel is an excellent read from start to finish and highly recommended.