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Sonia Sotomayor courts riches from book deal

Justice rakes in nearly $2 million from advances, appearances

When they aren’t busy handing down landmark decisions, professing the law or attending the opera, U.S. Supreme Court Justices can make millions in book deals.

The high court’s authors raked in nearly $2 million in publishing advances, appearances and royalties during 2012, with Justice Sonia Sotomayor taking home the lion’s share, according to new personal financial disclosure documents reviewed by the Center for Public Integrity.

Sotomayor collected more than $1.9 million in advances and promotion for her memoir, My Beloved World, published by Knopf Doubleday.

As the third woman and first Hispanic justice appointed to the Supreme Court, Sotomayor’s rags-to-riches tome became a No. 1 New York Times bestseller after its January release.

See Sotomayor's full disclosure filing here.

The publishing industry was also good, but not as good, to Justices Stephen Breyer and Antonin Scalia.

Breyer made roughly $30,890 in book royalties, while Scalia — his ideological adversary on the bench — collected nearly $64,000.

Scalia co-wrote Reading Law: The Interpretation of Legal Texts last year with Bryan Gardner, legal scholar and editor and chief of Black’s Law Dictionary. Breyer wrote Active Liberty: Interpreting Our Democratic Constitution, released in 2007, and 2010’s Making Our Democracy Work: A Judge's View.

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Reprinted by permission of The Center for Public Integrity.

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