“Comic debut novel.” Kirkus Reviews
978-0-8021-4372-3 • $13.00 • Paperback • June 2008
"In the world of the federal judiciary, where judges are sacrosanct and impervious to criticism, Saira Rao’s deliciously controversial debut novel ranks with mooning the Supreme Court during oral argument" Carlin Romano, The Philadelphia Inquirer
Sheila Raj is a recent graduate of Columbia Law Shool with dreams of working for the ACLU. When she lands a coveted year-long federal clerkship with legal goddess Judge Helga Friedman, she cannot help but think that her life is destined for jurisprudential greatness. But law school did not prepare Sheila for the power-hungry sociopath who greets her on her first day and pushes her to the brink of resignation. It is only when she is assigned to a high-profile death penalty case that Sheila realizes she has to survive the year as Friedman’s chambermaid not just her sanity, but actual lives hang in the balance. With Chambermaid, debut novelist Saira Rao boldly takes us into the mysterious world of the third branch of U.S. government, where the leaders are not elected and can never be fired. With its biting wit and laugh-out-loud humor, this novel will change everything you think you know about how great lawyers and great judges are made.