Anatomy Of A Scandal Book Review @duffythewriter

Anatomy Of A Scandal – A Sunday Times Best Seller

You want to believe your husband. She wants to destroy him.

Anatomy of a Scandal centres on a high-profile marriage that begins to unravel when the husband is accused of a terrible crime. Sophie is sure her husband, James, is innocent and desperately hopes to protect her precious family from the lies which might ruin them. Kate is the barrister who will prosecute the case – she is equally certain that James is guilty and determined he will pay for his crimes.

A high-profile marriage thrust into the spotlight. A wife, determined to keep her family safe, must face a prosecutor who believes justice has been a long time coming. A scandal that will rock Westminster. And the women caught at the heart of it.

Anatomy of A Scandal is a compelling read about truth, faith, privilege, lies, secrets, power and fear.  Sophie is an in Oxford-educated woman, who married the man of her dreams, James. James is perfect. Incredibly good-looking, whip-smart, and has forged a successful career as a politician with the help of his oldest and best friend, Tom.  This world of privilege and unbounded success comes crashing down when James is accused of a terrible crime. Sophie has always had unwavering belief, trust, and love for her husband, but is that belief about to crumble away?

Kate Woodcroft QC is the prosecutor, also an intelligent woman, who is divorced, childless and one of the most successful QC’s in the country. She is certain that James Whitehouse is guilty and as you read through this carefully paced novel you understand what drives her, and how James clearly underestimates the women in his life.

Author of Anatomy Of A Scandal Sarah Vaughan
Author of Anatomy Of A Scandal Sarah Vaughan

Duffy’s Thoughts On Anatomy Of A Scandal

Each character is exquisitely crafted and the plot plays out like a BBC four-part drama. The story skips between Oxford in the 90’s to the present day in Westminster and both locations are a perfect foil for the characters giving a depth to the plot. The dark corridors, poorly lit grounds at night, tiny spaces for two, the weight of history and secrets past.  Of wealth, the gap between classes, the pompousness of the Oxford elite and the sense of entitlement of those in their twenties with the world at their feet. The sense of power and secrets which is secreted into the wood panelled walls of Westminster and the reporters who hover in the shadows, waiting for a scandal to break.

This is a timely novel, and although author Sarah Vaughan states this piece is entirely fictional, there are elements of headlines past which you will instantly leap to.  Vaughan’s writing is so detailed, it can only come from a writer who has experienced Oxford first-hand which adds authenticity to this novel.  We’ve all lapped up headline scandals and leapt to assume that a privileged politician is guilty, or that a good-looking, affable celebrity simply couldn’t have committed a crime, even if there is evidence to the contrary. It all comes down to public opinion and persona. The real scandal comes when those are stripped away and the truth seeps out.

Anatomy Of A Scandal is a carefully crafted and layered novel which kept me in suspense to the last chapter.

4 out of 5 from me.

Anatomy of a scandal book cover

If you read He Said/She Said, you’ll love this read.

Thanks to Simon & Schuster who provided a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Available at all good bookshops