"Where Law Ends" is a 2020 non-fiction book by Andrew Weissmann, one of the lead prosecutors for Robert Mueller's Special Counsel Investigation of ties between Donald Trump and the Russian government. The book is a straightforward description of the events surrounding Weissmann's time in the Office, from 2017 to 2019, with only brief descriptions of events before and after that time, such as Weissmann's earlier time in the Enron investigation. It contains little autobiographical detail, other than incidental information about Weissmann's life.

The investigations into the criminal behavior of Donald Trump, especially the Mueller investigation, deserve their own write-up, but the details of them are so far ranging, that I couldn't do justice to it here. So instead, I am writing at a second level: writing about someone else writing about it. I was very conversant with the investigation before hand, so this book didn't have a lot of new information for me. The book lays out the information in a way that the scattered news reports that occurred over two years did not. But still, for anyone who followed the news, this book has no shocking revelations, either because there was no other information that what was publicly available (doubtful) or because Weissmann couldn't include the information for legal reasons (which seems to be the case).

There are a few things that this book does add, for someone who already knows the basic story of the investigation. First, and seemingly trivially, the book describes what the environment was like. Even during the middle of a high-pressure investigation, the staff had their own share of in-jokes and workplace fun. Weissmann describes hanging up a "Quiet" sign over the office of a loud colleague. And, if you ever wondered whether Mueller's staff teased him about his fondness for overly-sweetened coffee, this book will put that curiosity to rest. However, much more importantly, the book gives some hints into the inner workings of the team, including the team's timidity on certain manners, such as whether to subpoena either Donald Trump Sr or Jr. While Weissmann defends Mueller, based on what seems to be a long-running personal and professional relationship, he does fault other members of the team, including, most commonly, Mueller's chief of staff, Aaron Zebley. But since so many of the underlying facts of the case aren't, and can't be described, it is hard for the reader to know exactly why those decisions were made.

And finally, there is something missing from the book. Although Weissmann does seem to come around to believing that certain official people, such as Attorney General William Barr, and deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, were not acting in good faith, the book seems to be predicated on the theory that Trump had corrupted institutions that were, previous to his rise, honest. But Barr and Rosenstein had both been in the Department of Justice for decades, meaning that it seems unlikely that they were totally honest until they met Trump. You can't cheat an honest man, as the saying goes. At no point does the Trump investigation make Weissmann reexamine his basic views about criminal justice in the United States. It would be interesting if Weissmann was to acknowledge that in a world where well-connected people with legal backgrounds like James Comey, Andrew McCabe and Dana Boente could be publicly manipulated and punished, what type of abuses might happen to a young black man who draws the ire of a sheriff's deputy. But this book, for all that it provides good detail about the investigation itself, seems to draw a blank when it comes to larger conclusions about justice in the United States.

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