Anatomy of a Scandal

A Novel

Anatomy of a Scandal

Instant International Bestseller

“A nuanced story line perfectly in tune with our #metoo times.” —People, Book of the Week

“One of the season’s most buzzed-about thrillers.” —Bookish

“A strong choice for book clubs. Former political correspondent Vaughan makes an impressive debut with this savvy, propulsive courtroom drama.” —Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

“Vaughan offers gripping insight into a political scandal’s hidden machinations and the tension between justice and privilege…Absorbing, polished.” —Booklist (starred review)

“Skillfully interweaving the story of the unfolding scandal, Vaughan gradually reveals just how shockingly high the stakes are…Sinewy…engrossing, twist-filled.” —Publishers Weekly (starred review)

Some people’s secrets are darker than others.

Sophie Whitehouse has a lovely home, two adorable children, and a handsome, successful husband. In other words, she has the “perfect” life. But everything changes the night her husband James comes home and confesses an indiscretion. Suddenly, her neat, ordered world is turned upside down. Did she ever really know the man she married?

James’s revelation, as it turns out, is just the tip of the iceberg: a larger scandal is about to explode. James stands accused of a terrible crime, and their family is shoved into the spotlight as his trial begins. Meanwhile, behind the scenes, another woman is working to destroy Sophie’s husband. Sophie remains convinced of James;s innocence and is desperate to protect her precious family from the rumors that threaten to rip them apart. She’s kept his darkest secret ever since their university days. And if she stood by him then, she can do it now. But, the truth is even more shocking than anyone ever could have thought. Is James the guilty perpetrator or an innocent victim of a toxic agenda?

In this riveting story of power, revenge, and deception, no one’s motives are pure, but some people’s secrets are much darker than others.
  • Atria/Emily Bestler Books | 
  • 400 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781501172182 | 
  • January 2018
List Price $11.99 (price may vary by retailer)

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Reading Group Guide

This reading group guide for Anatomy of a Scandal includes an introduction, discussion questions, and ideas for enhancing your book club. The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for your discussion. We hope that these ideas will enrich your conversation and increase your enjoyment of the book.

Introduction

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, and 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.

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About the Author

Sarah Vaughan
Photograph by Philip Mynott

Sarah Vaughan

Sarah Vaughan read English at Oxford and went on to become a journalist. She spent eleven years at the Guardian as a news reporter, health correspondent, and political correspondent. She left to freelance and began writing fiction the week she turned forty. Her debut novel, The Art of Baking Blind, published by Hodder & Stoughton, St. Martin’s Press, and in seven other languages, was the result. The Farm at the Edge of the World was published in June 2016 and will be published in Germany and France. Sarah lives in Cambridge with her husband and two children.

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