Authors note

Author’s Note
I practiced law for almost twenty years and, like most lawyers, learned it is a very
difficult way to make a living, especially for those in small firms or those practicing on
their own. It is a constant grind to get clients and then, convince them to pay you. It is a
tough life even for those lawyers in large, well established firms where the pay is regular
and good. Basically, you become a slave to the firm. Little wonder polls consistently
show that 50% of all lawyers would rather do something else.
I have read many novels about lawyers, courtrooms and legal dramas. With the
exception of a very small number, almost all of them left me wondering if the author had
ever been in a courtroom? Ever actually represented a live, human client with a real legal
problem? And, most importantly, ever tried to make a living at it? I doubt many have.
When I set out to write this book, The Key to Justice, my main purpose was to
write a book about a lawyer and the struggles of the practice of law as it really is. How
unglamorous it actually is and the simple truth that few lawyers get rich from it. While it
is a tough way to make a living, being a lawyer can also be very interesting, challenging
and, at times, quite rewarding.
The main case in the book, the prosecution of a serial killer, is totally fictional.
However, the case Marc Kadella handles on behalf of his wife against the IRS, the Justice
Department and the U.S. Government is not. It is, in fact, a case I personally handled
and every word is absolutely accurate. The names have been changed to protect the truly
stupid and incompetent but all else is factually correct.
Before the book was published, I asked friends and acquaintances if the IRS case
was a distraction and should be removed or left in the book? It was unanimous that it be
left in because of the interest it generated. Everyone was fascinated, but not surprised, by
the way the Government conducted themselves and were as caught up in that case as they
were the serial killer case. They all wanted to know how it came out.
At any rate, I believe this is a more realistic look at the practice of law and hope that
most lawyers who read the book will agree with me. Thank you and enjoy.
Dennis Carstens