Anatomy of a Scandal – Sarah Vaughan

Anatomy of A Scandal is a brilliant debut novel focussing on the elite, politics, law and a rape case.  This character driven suspense thriller is a must read for fans of intelligent, simmering stories. 

Book Blurb: An astonishingly incisive and suspenseful novel about a scandal amongst Britain’s privileged elite and the women caught up in its wake.

Sophie’s husband James is a loving father, a handsome man, a charismatic and successful public figure. And yet he stands accused of a terrible crime. Sophie is convinced he is innocent and desperate to protect her precious family from the lies that threaten to rip them apart.

Kate is the lawyer hired to prosecute the case: an experienced professional who knows that the law is all about winning the argument. And yet Kate seeks the truth at all times. She is certain James is guilty and is determined he will pay for his crimes.

Who is right about James? Sophie or Kate? And is either of them informed by anything more than instinct and personal experience? Despite her privileged upbringing, Sophie is well aware that her beautiful life is not inviolable. She has known it since she and James were first lovers, at Oxford, and she witnessed how easily pleasure could tip into tragedy.

Most people would prefer not to try to understand what passes between a man and a woman when they are alone: alone in bed, alone in an embrace, alone in an elevator… Or alone in the moonlit courtyard of an Oxford college, where a girl once stood before a boy, heart pounding with excitement, then fear. Sophie never understood why her tutorial partner Holly left Oxford so abruptly. What would she think, if she knew the truth?

My Review: Firstly, I need to say WOW what an incredible debut novel.  This story centres around the elite, over-privileged and entitled students at Oxford university.

The Scandal in question involves a handsome, charismatic politician James, accused of rape and is told from alternating points of view; his wife Sophie who is desperate to believe and defend him and the prosecutor Kate who is determined to prove his guilt.

This is a slow burning, tense thriller which I thoroughly enjoyed reading.  If you like your stories simmering with tension, intelligent and well crafted characters and a plausible plot you will enjoy this.

About The Author:  Sarah Vaughan read English at Oxford and went on to be a journalist. After training with the Press Association, she worked for The Guardian for 11 years as a news reporter, health correspondent and political correspondent. She started writing fiction after deciding to freelance. The Art of Baking Blind – published by Hodder (UK and Canada), St Martin’s Press (US) and translated into eight languages – is the result. She lives in Cambridge with her husband and two young children and is currently writing her second novel.

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