Atty at Law (Hardcover)
Introducing Atticus Peale! A debut middle-grade novel featuring a savvy sleuthing heroine sends a powerful message about standing up for others.
Atticus Peale is desperately trying to save the life of a dog in the animal shelter where she volunteers. And an alligator in the swamp who only allegedly tried to eat a fisherman. Her father named her after his favorite character, a lawyer in a famous book, but everyone calls her Atty, and no one, except her dad, stepmom, and stepbrother, thinks she's old enough to make a legal case for those who, as Atty points out, can't speak up for themselves. She's learning some law basics from her dad, who is defending an illiterate man in town on a murder charge. But when strange occurrences begin to threaten Atty's efforts, she isn't sure which is more difficult: coming to the defense of the voiceless, countering the sideways looks she and her biracial family get in their Alabama town, or navigating the social scene of middle school. But one thing she is sure of: Jethro Gersham did not kill anyone, and she is determined to find out who did.
Full of grit, curiosity, and also all the awkwardness and anxiety that comes with turning twelve, readers will cheer for Atty's success .... and survival!
About the Author
TIM LOCKETTE is a newspaper reporter from Alabama. He lives in Jacksonville, Alabama, with his wife and son. This book is dedicated to their dog, Dottie.
"Atty is the smart, compassionate, and courageous advocate that animals need. I laughed, I cried, I cheered."
—Peg Kehret, author of Cages and Shelter Dogs
*“In his debut novel, Lockette deftly juggles issues of race (Atty and her father are white; Atty’s stepmother and Martinez are black), parental loss, bullying, animal rights, and much more in this touching and at times laugh-out-loud tale of a lawyer-to-be. Atty’s voice is authentic, and her trials (both in court and in school) will resonate with readers. A double-must-read for all animal lovers.”
—Kirkus Reviews, starred review
“Atty at Law is issue-laden, true. Yet it categorically refuses to talk down to its intended audience. Instead, it gently challenges that audience at every turn. For Tim Lockette knows, as he has Atty tell us, 'Maybe life just has a certain amount of sadness in it and you just have to cry from time to time to let it out.'"
"And finally here’s a book that celebrates speaking up for those without a voice. It features multi-racial family in the contemporary south and is a legal thriller in the vein of the Theodore Boone series by Grisham, but with considerably more heart. Our advocate Atticus Peale who goes by Atty is an animal lover and uses the law to save a shelter dog. She then tries to advocate for a considerably less sympathetic animal and her efforts intersect with her father’s. He is an attorney defending an illiterate man facing a murder charges."
—Equal Opportunity Today
"This is his debut novel and I truly hope the first of many. The book is for young readers, and although I am definitely not one, I enjoyed it thoroughly — for the characters created, the issues addressed, and for the very clever allusions and references which the young reader will not recognize but which are a delight to those who notice them."