MY DAYS IN COURT: Unique Views of the Famous and Infamous by a Court Artist by Ida Libby & Frank W. Martin Dengrove

MY DAYS IN COURT: Unique Views of the Famous and Infamous by a Court Artist

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Deft verbal sketches, bound by thin autobiographical glue, of the courtroom personalities Dengrove drew during 15 years (1972-87) as NBC's chief court illustrator. Writing with her husband, Dengrove remembers scores of celebrities here, from killer/author Jack Henry Abbott (""A tall and gaunt white man with Oriental eyes, Abbott looked dangerous and distrusting"") to Rev. Sun Myung Moon (on trial for income-tax evasion, he ""sat quietly with his eyes closed, as if he put himself in a trance and tried to block out the testimony given against him""); from alleged mobster John Gotti (""I never--not once--saw a hair out of place"") to Caroline Kennedy (testifying in her mother's suit against paparazzo Ron Galella, ""[her] statements seemed slightly naive and immature, as if she had been protected from direct questioning most of her life"") and the Ayatollah Khomeini, spotted by Dengrove in an Afghanistan airport (""Khomeini loomed larger than life. His dignified beard and mustache and dark, beady eyes, which riveted into space. . .mesmerized me""). With pungent commentary on the criminal justice system (Dengrove disapproves of the insanity defense and favors the death penalty), and illustrated with 44 b&w reproductions of the author's drawings, this is outspoken but light, entertaining fare for armchair jurists.

Pub Date: July 19th, 1990
Publisher: Morrow