John Paul Stevens, one of only four living retired Supreme Court justices, is ready — at 98 years old — to tell his story.
In his new book, “The Making of a Justice: Reflections on My First 94 Years,” Stevens recounts tales from his life as a kid growing up in a wealthy Chicago family, a naval officer stationed at Pearl Harbor during World War II, and a Supreme Court justice ruling on landmark cases such as Bush v. Gore.
"It almost seems I was writing two separate books,” Stevens told the New York Times in an interview published Monday. “The first one about the time before I went on the court and the second one about the many, many terms I was on the court.”
“The Making of a Justice” will hit bookshelves in May, less than a month after Stevens’s 99th birthday. The idea for the memoir, Stevens told the Times, came soon after his 94th birthday (hence the “first 94 years”). His late wife, Maryan, threw him a surprise party for that milestone, and the memories shared that evening set Stevens on the path to writing his third book.
The tome comes at a time when the judiciary is making headlines after Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr.’s recent war of words with President Trump over judicial independence and the controversial confirmation of Justice Brett M. Kavanaugh.
Little, Brown and Company, the book’s publisher, calls it “an urgent read today for those trying to better understand our country and the Constitution.”