deirdre dare expat allen and overy.jpgDeidre Dare is a senior lawyer in Allen & Overy’s Russia office. Like many an expat, she’s been maintaining a website, presumably to keep folks back home up to date on her life and to share the splendor of living abroad with random strangers on the Internet.

On the website, Philosophy Can Be Sexy, she posts poetry, photos of herself in lingerie, “philosophy” (if a quote from the “Marriage Delusion” counts), and a serialized novel about the expat life in Moscow.

Allen & Overy was not too pleased to discover the novel. Per the Daily Mail:

Miss Dare, who is thought to earn £150,000 a year at the firm’s Russian office, is calling her steamy online novel, Expat: A Weekly Serialized Novel About Living in Moscow.

It describes the sordid lifestyle pursued by staff at a British-led professional firm in the capital.

Miss Dare’s promiscuous heroine describes herself as a ‘part drug addict, part alcoholic’ who regularly turns up for work hours late and hungover.

She and her colleagues are constantly seeking new sexual conquests, attend obscene sex shows involving donkeys and dwarves, blow fortunes at expensive restaurants and gossip about where they are planning to get drunk next.

Sounds like working abroad is like being a summer associate all year long. An erotic excerpt for the grammarians among you, after the jump.

In our inquiry about Ms. Dare, Allen & Overy tells us, “A&O does not comment on individual members of staff. With regards to our general policies on staff conduct Allen & Overy aims to uphold the highest standards of professional conduct. Everyone at Allen & Overy is expected to conduct themselves appropriately and professionally at all times.”

This story has gotten a lot of attention in the blogosphere. Everyone’s all excited about the sex, the drinking, the drugs, the affairs with married men. We’re more interested in this steamy passage on parts of speech, from the latest chapter, Chapter Ten: PEACE, WAR, PUNISHMENT AND CRIME:

“Of course,” he said softly, holding the champagne bottle to my lips. “Drink! Security. It is what everyone does. And you are the verb of my life, the adjective of my existence. So, you cannot go anywhere. You cannot. Or I cannot get out of bed tomorrow. I will have no reason to get out of bed tomorrow. And I will not. It will all be useless.”

(The Russians are even more dramatic than I am.)

I sipped the champagne obligingly and widened my eyes.

“Yes. Okay. But am I your noun?” I finally asked, wiping my mouth with the back of my hand and looking him directly in the eye.

“You are more than that. You are my gerund,” he answered, putting his forehead to mine and closing his eyes. “My gerund.”

“Ah – your gerund,” I said with a smile he couldn’t see, but I knew he could hear. “Not your infinitive?”

“You are – all my parts of speech and all my tenses,” he said, helplessly, taking another swig from the bottle and raising one eyebrow.

That may be more obscene than donkeys and dwarves.

Sadly, the rest of the novel is on hold for now. Ms. Dare’s site announces, “The Author has been forbidden from publishing further chapters of Expat for the time being. She will resume if and when she is permitted to.”

Update: More about Deidre Dare from the London Times, which reports on A&O’s reaction to her exploits:

[T]he London-based firm suspended her when she refused to take [her blog] down. The company blocked her BlackBerry, e-mail and electronic work pass and claimed that she had brought it into disrepute. She now fears she may be sacked from her £150,000-a-year job for her resistance.

But she won’t go quietly: “If I get sacked I’ll sue. It’s about freedom of speech. They’ve picked a fight with the wrong girl.”

Miss Dare, the £150,000 lawyer, told to stop putting porn on the net [The Daily Mail]
‘Magic circle’ lawyer told to stop writing online erotic novel [The Daily Telegraph]
Allen & Overy Muzzles Lawyer’s Erotic Fiction [Legal Blog Watch]


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