/ Includes PS Section In an extraordinary history of the criminal trial, Sadakat Kadri shows with wit, legal insight and a travel writer's eye for detail, how the irrationality of the past lives on in the legal systems of the present. A bold and brilliant debut from a prize-winning new writer. / Human-driven narrative. / Kadri is a brilliant young barrister working at the chambers to which other book-writing lawyers like Helena Kennedy and Geoffrey Robertson belong. / Kadri won the Shiva Naipaul/Spectator Travel Writing Prize in 1998 (judged by William Dalrymple and Caryl Phillips). / In the UK, as the Blair Administration attempts to truncate the right to trial by jury, an examination of its history and importance could not be more timely. / Competition: Charles Nicholl, Alain de Botton, Christopher Hitchens, Ryszard Kapuscinski, Michael Ignatieff, Philip Gourevitch, Helena Kennedy, Steven Pinker, Oliver Sacks
Sadakat Kadri was born in 1964 and studied history and law at Cambridge and Harvard universities. As well as being a member of the New York Bar and a tenant at London's Doughty Street Chambers, he is a travel writer whose Cadogan Guide to Prague was shortlisted for the Thomas Cook award and who won the Shiva Naipaul/Spectator Prize in 1998. As a barrister, he has represented several prisoners on death row in the Carribean, prosecuted one African dictator and challenged the legality of a military dictatorship in Fiji. He lived in Manhattan while writing the book, arriving shortly before 11 September 2001, but now lives in London.
'He tells a good story, deftly managing to mix anecdote and serious analysis. An impressive performance.' The Times 'A mine of information and an entertaining read, written with wit and style.' Sunday Telegraph 'An amusing and colourful and a deeply thoughtful book of contemporary relevance ! a real achievement.' Guardian 'An interesting and timely book.' Observer 'You don't have to agree with Kadri's political views to find his history of the trial engaging stuff.' Daily Telegraph 'A talented stylist who knows how to tell a good story.' Financial Times 'Scholarly and instructive.' John Mortimer, Spectator