About the Author

James Wilson graduated BA/LLB (Hons) from the University of Auckland, New Zealand, with a Senior Prize in Law. He practised in civil litigation in both New Zealand and England before becoming an author, editor and manager.  He is the author of four books and many blogs and magazine articles.  His book Court and Bowled: Tales of Cricket and the Law was described by Wisden Cricketers' Almanack as 'a surprising gem' and 'all in all, a thoroughly enlightening piece of work'. Both Court and Bowled and his later book Trials and Tribulations: Uncommon Tales of the Common Law were recommended as Christmas reading by The Times

He has been a member of the Savage Club since June 2015. 

James has had a lifelong interest in the Great War and has spent many years researching the conflict including the involvement of members of both sides of his family. 


Other books by James Wilson

‘In summertime village cricket is the delight of everyone’ the English judge Lord Denning famously wrote, in a case brought by someone who clearly disagreed with him. The case was but one example of how the game of cricket cannot always avoid the law. Neighbours or passers-by get hit by stray cricket balls, protesters interrupt matches, players get into fights or take drugs, and not a few involved with the game sue each other for libel.

This book looks at a number of stories where cricket or cricketers gave rise to a legal dispute. It begins with a short history of cricket as it appears in the early law reports, including the case from 1598 which contains the very first known use of the word cricket. It then turns to individual cases from Victorian times to the present day.

All of the stories demonstrate something common to both cricket matches and court cases: behind the intrigue, entertainment and amusement of both there are real people and real human stories, with all the usual human emotions and fallibility.

The book will be of interest not only to cricket fans or lawyers but anyone interested in tales of high (and low) human drama and great ethical, moral and legal dilemmas.

A surprising gem ... all in all, a thoroughly enlightening piece of work
Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack 2015


A thoughtful and well written book
Lord Judge, former Lord Chief Justice


A must read for anyone interested in these pursuits

Robert Griffiths QC, former Chairman of the Laws Sub-committee, MCC


An interesting and entertaining collection of stories and cases
Law Society Gazette


Why are court cases such a fertile source for writers of fiction and non-fiction alike? For a start, they usually have a beginning, middle and end; and a ready cast of characters playing defined roles. They always have an inherent crisis to be resolved. But they also contain a great deal of human interest: behind the theatrics and etiquette of the courtroom, and the often arcane language and concepts of the law, there are real people seeking answers to real-life problems.

The common law is sometimes made by faceless corporations, or rich and powerful individuals seeking to preserve their money or reputation. Just as often, however, it is made by ordinary people who are not seeking fame or wealth, but who are simply trying to right whatever they believed has been wronged.

This book is a collection of 50 stories of notable court cases spanning more than a century. Written in an accessible style with an eye to the human as much as legal interest, the book will be of interest to lawyers and non-lawyers alike.

Ethical dilemmas, nail-biting litigation, human crises - all are here. No wonder writers like the law ...
The Times, 17 December 2015

... an excellent addition to the bookshelves
Phillip Taylor MBE, Amazon review


A great read for any lawyer 
Emeritus Professor Keith Davies, New Law Journal

Cases Causes.jpg

What do Prince Charles, Bette Davis, Sir Ian Botham, Mrs Victoria Gillick and a man whose family grave appeared in the background of a splatter horror film have in common? Each of them felt they had been wronged in some way, and each went to court to try and do something about it.

Cases, Causes and Controversies looks at 50 legal disputes from Victorian times to the present day, where a compelling moral or legal issue was at stake, or where the background to the case was interesting, amusing or infuriating. The disputes include civil and criminal cases. Some concerned petty insults of the most trivial importance; others raised the weightiest moral, ethical and legal questions. Some of the stories are richly ironic. Bette Davis was left penniless after losing her case in England and felt she had no option but to return to America and resume working for the studio she had unsuccessfully sued. But after doing so she became one of the richest and most acclaimed actresses in history.

The book will be of interest not simply to lawyers but to anyone interested in stories of great human interest and how the legal system tried to deal with them.

… a good mix of 50 tales from the courts covering murder, warfare, the press, sport and many others. The accounts of each case are interesting and include something new for everyone.
Law Society Gazette



These tales are riveting
Christchurch Press

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