• £9.99

Publisher Description

Winner of the Books are My Bag Non-Fiction Award
Shortlisted for Waterstones Book of the Year
Shortlisted for Specsavers Non-Fiction Book of the Year

'Eye-opening, damning and hilarious' Tim Shipman, author of All Out War and Fall Out

“I’m a barrister, a job which requires the skills of a social worker, relationship counsellor, arm-twister, hostage negotiator, named driver, bus fare-provider, accountant, suicide watchman, coffee-supplier, surrogate parent and, on one memorable occasion, whatever the official term is for someone tasked with breaking the news to a prisoner that his girlfriend has been diagnosed with gonorrhoea.”

Welcome to the world of the Secret Barrister. These are the stories of life inside the courtroom. They are sometimes funny, often moving and ultimately life-changing.

How can you defend a child-abuser you suspect to be guilty? What do you say to someone sentenced to ten years who you believe to be innocent? What is the law and why do we need it?

And why do they wear those stupid wigs?

From the criminals to the lawyers, the victims, witnesses and officers of the law, here is the best and worst of humanity, all struggling within a broken system which would never be off the front pages if the public knew what it was really like.

Both a searing first-hand account of the human cost of the criminal justice system, and a guide to how we got into this mess, The Secret Barrister wants to show you what it’s really like and why it really matters.

Jack Hawkins
hr min
22 March
Pan Macmillan

Customer Reviews

C. Hitchens ,

Excellent, Sobering and Timely Book

Utterly scathing of government, legislators, vulture-type law firms, and occasionally the police, this book removed any remaining rose-tinted view I had that all is well in the English and Welsh criminal judicial process.
I suspect that if you enjoyed the Undercover Economist then you’ll like this.
Examples of people being acquitted or found guilty of serious crimes because of F-ups by the police/CPS/defence/prosecution, or judges imposing sentence lengths partly based on their mood or race of the accused. How legislators make the law, sentencing guidelines etc difficult to interpret. Underfunding in the system leading to pretty terrible consequences. How media reports on criminals, how MPs are less than brave or pragmatic. There’s a lot of fascinating stuff in this book for those of us unfamiliar with the judicial process, and I’m certainly glad that I read/listened to it.

(The narration is clear and engaging too.)

Fernedene ,

Good book, terrible sound.

The content is excellent but the sound recording is appallingly bad.
Recording quality is so poor that I recommend that you read the book and don’t buy this to listen to.

lifeat40 ,

The secret barrister

Very disappointed, boring and overly detailed descriptions of insignificant things which strays away from the storylines. The mans voice is too posh and I feel like I’m listening to peter rabit.

Listeners Also Bought