Tamara Sim, a ruthlessly ambitious young journalist, is thrilled when she is sent to interview veteran war correspondent Honor Tait. Finally - a chance for Tamara to prove that there's more to her than forged expenses claims and the 'what's in/what's out' column she churns out for her tabloid. But Honor isn't an easy subject; cold and evasive to the point of rudeness, it's almost as if she has something to hide. And when Tamara starts to do some digging (not all of it strictly legal) she makes a discovery which has devastating consequences for them both...
In The Spoiler, the former literary editor of the Financial Times and the Guardian offers a first hand glimpse into the world of British journalism.
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A wonderfully entertaining comedy of manners about the dying days of Fleet Street and the cult of celebrity... The Spoiler is a clever, literary romp with flashes of Nancy Mitford and Helen Fielding... A darkly, deliciously witty read - Independent on Sunday
Brilliant ... It grips from the first with verbal polish and razor-sharp satire - Mail on Sunday
Masterful... a strikingly entertaining and accomplished novel - Evening Standard
A wily, insightful and engaging book about human nature... McAfee has an excellent eye for detail and a wry comic touch... The Spoiler has a cracking plot, alive with twists and turns and meaning - The Times
Extremely funny and sharply observed... Seizes the noble tradition of the Journalism Novel and rings some delightful changes on it - Independent
Tightly written and pacy. The central characters are believable, the setting exact, and one would defy the reader not to feel contained, held, by the professionalism and dexterity of the author - Irish Times
Richly comic and entertaining - Tatler
Highly entertaining - Guardian
Spritely satire - Sunday Times
A clever satire, set in 1997, about the last days of Fleet Street... Darkly entertaining - Red
A wide-ranging, energetic satire on what used to be called Fleet Street - Times Literary Supplement
When high meets lowbrow, comedy ensues, but McAfee's novel is not without serious intent. She deftly peels away her characters' pretensions, forcing readers to examine their own prejudices. - Scotsman
Sparky tragicomedy - Daily Mail
McAfee is a superlative writer and plotter...McAfee has produced a locus classicus of Fleet Street - The Lady
Darkly funny but also a very timely read - Stylist
[A] satirical debut about the newspaper business - Stand Point
A cutting, hilarious portrait of British print journalism... An entirely human story that brilliantly recreates and analyses the recent past - The Times
Those gripped by the escalating News International scandal might enjoy the latest newspaper novel Annalena McAfee's The Spoiler - Glasgow Herald
authentic, entertaining and draws on her own experience as an arts journalist - Daily Express
The Spoiler - set in the halcyon days before phone hacking - was one of the funniest and sharpest fleet street novels in years. - Sunday Telegraph Seven
McAfee - herself a former journalist - evokes two distinct eras and styles of journalism, that of fearless frontline reportage and that of its successor: style-oriented, celebrity-obsessed features coverage... This is a pacy read that leaves little doubt in the reader's mind that one school of journalism deserves more mourning than the other - Guardian
Marvellous satire...the novel is cunningly plotted and satisfyingly nuanced - Independent on Sunday
If the peek into the world of newspaper journalism afforded by the Leveson inquiry has you gasping for more, then this timely paperback release is perfect...a fiendishly funny (and frighteningly plausible) world of fiddled expenses and suspect tactics - Shortlist
Thoroughly enjoyable behind-the-scenes expose of an ambitious celebrity journalist's attempt to nail the scoop of her life - Metro
This is the paperback edition. The hardback appeared before the News Corporation bosses were dragged into the Commons. McAfee was either very prescient or close to the action, holding her fictional hacks to account for printing false stories gleaned from disreputable sources - Time Out
About the Author
Annalena McAfee worked in newspapers for more than three decades. She was Arts and Literary Editor of the Financial Times and founded the Guardian Review, which she edited for six years.