In Your Defence: Stories of Life and Law (Paperback)Sarah Langford (author)
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Sarah Langford is a barrister. Her job is to stand in court representing the mad and the bad, the vulnerable, the heartbroken and the hopeful. She must become their voice: weave their story around the black and white of the law and tell it to the courtroom.
These stories may not make headlines but they will change the lives of ordinary people in extraordinary ways. They are stories which, but for a twist of luck, might have been yours. With remarkable candour, Sarah describes eleven cases which reveal what goes on in our criminal and family courts: these are tales of domestic fall out, everyday burglary, sexual indiscretion, and children caught up in the law. They are sometimes shocking and they are often heart-stopping.
She examines how she feels as she defends the person standing in the dock. She also shows us how our attitudes and actions can shape not only the outcome of a case, but the legal system itself.
Publisher: Transworld Publishers Ltd
Number of pages: 320
Weight: 220 g
Dimensions: 198 x 127 x 20 mm
'Sarah Langford has reinvented a genre ... [as a barrister she has turned] her experience of 11 criminal cases into short stories that are as compelling as fiction, with the added fascination of being essentially true ... Immensely powerful.' - Jenni Russell, The Sunday Times
'A compelling read for anyone who cares about fairness, justice and humanity and should be on the reading list of all politicians and policy-makers.' - Catherine Baksi, The Observer
'[Langford] combines the demands of her job, the stories of those she represents and her own views and emotions with great skill...powerful, moving and often captivating.' - Barney Thompson, The Financial Times
'Vivid... surprisingly uplifting. A thoughtful, elegant book. ... it is often as thrilling as a detective novel. And sometimes it is moving: the last chapter had this reviewer in tears.' - Thomas Grant, QC, The Times
'A riveting account of cases she's fought over nearly 10 years in the family courts. These are harrowing stories: of newborns taken by social services, of bitter divorces, of children trapped in the turbulence of addiction, gangs, or both, an unprecedented collection, moving, enraging and desperate, all told in Langford's cool, compelling prose.' - Charlotte Edwardes, The Evening Standard
'I loved this book. It made my heart sing. Written by a woman in the law with compassion, wit and legal know-how, these true life courtroom stories tell it like it is.' - Helena Kennedy QC
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Thank you to Transworld books for the opportunity to both meet Sarah and get an early copy last month!
I sat down yesterday with the intention of just reading the first case in the book but before long I had read all... More
Langford's reflections on past cases and the law are a must read. She herself is a beautiful writer, painting a detailed picture of her clients and mechanisms of our legal system. I found it surprisingly touching... More
What surprised me about this book is the way Langford manages to create a face to the cases we often hear about in the news. I found myself thinking one way at the beginning of a chapter, and by the end feeing annoyed... More
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