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Little Disasters

the compelling and thought-provoking new novel from the author of the Sunday Times bestseller Anatomy of a Scandal


From the bestselling author of Anatomy of a Scandal – a new thought-provoking novel exploring the complexity of motherhood and all that connects and disconnects us. 

You think you know her…
But look a little closer
She is a stay-at-home mother-of-three with boundless reserves of patience, energy and love. After being friends for a decade, this is how Liz sees Jess. 
Then one moment changes everything. 
Dark thoughts and carefully guarded secrets surface – and Liz is left questioning everything she thought she knew about her friend, and about herself.

© Phil Mynott

Sarah Vaughan read English at Oxford and went on to become a journalist. After training at the Press Association, she spent eleven years at the Guardian as a news reporter and political correspondent before leaving to freelance and write fiction. Her first two novels, The Art of Baking Blind and The Farm at the Edge of the World, were followed by her first psychological thriller, Anatomy of a Scandal: a Sunday Times bestseller, and Richard & Judy pick of the decade, developed as a Netflix series starring Rupert Friend, Michelle Dockery and Sienna Miller. Her fourth novel, Little Disasters, a Waterstone’s thriller of the month, was published in 2020. Reputation is her fifth novel.

  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio UK (April 2, 2020)
  • Runtime: 10 hours and 52 minutes
  • ISBN13: 9781471167898

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Each character is brilliantly drawn, and the book delivers surprise after surprise’

– Claire Fuller, author of Bitter Orange

‘Absolutely brilliant; an emotionally devastating story, brave and honest’

– Emma Curtis, author of One Little Mistake

‘Compelling, beautifully written, so perceptive and emotionally devastating. Like Anatomy of a Scandal, it feels like an important book as well as a brilliant read’

– Lucy Foley, author of The Hunting Party

‘Vaughan explores the darker impulses of motherhood - the fear, fury and despair; the frantic juggling, loss of control and exhaustion - and of course the overwhelming love. Refreshingly assured and punchy writing that is sure to hit a nerve’ 

– Lucy Atkins

'A brilliant storyteller, Vaughan serves up every mother’s nightmare with consummate skill and a big heart. Clever. Totally compelling. Impossible to put down’ 

– Eve Chase, author of Black Rabbit Hall

‘I loved it and didn’t want to put it down. So, so good on motherhood and friendship’

– Laura Marshall, author of Friend Request

'A true psychological thriller shows us, as all the best ones do, that the scariest place is not the dark alleyway but inside the pathways of our own minds. Compelling…and important’ 

– Araminta Hall, author of Our Kind of Cruelty

‘An immaculately researched and compelling story about the devastating fall out from one mistake’

– Jane Shemilt, author of The Playground

'Sarah Vaughan turns her pin-sharp attentions to the blame game that is early parenthood, raising the stakes to truly fearful levels. This tense, absorbing read will have parents – in fact, all readers – turning the pages deep into the night' 

– Louise Candlish, author of Those People

‘Sarah’s writing is so impressive and skilful – the book is gripping, meticulous, and touches the raw nerves of parenthood’

– Terry Stiastny, author of Conflicts of Interest

‘A fabulous twisty look at early motherhood and friendships. Domestic noir and psyche thriller, it’s brave and brilliant’

– Fionnuala Kearney, author of The Book of Love

'Sarah Vaughan manages to hit that rare sweet spot between satisfying, literary writing and a plot that grips you by the throat. Little Disasters is every bit as brilliant as Anatomy of a Scandal. Superb' 

– Cass Green, author of The Killer Inside

'Sarah Vaughan delivers another masterful page-turner, this time tackling early motherhood at its least joyful. As with Anatomy of a Scandal, she writes with intelligence and compassion; the result is a truly gripping read’ 

– Catherine Isaac, author of Messy, Wonderful Us

'I read this with a fascinated, mounting sense of horror because it could all be too true. Compulsive reading with an ending I didn’t see coming'

– Jane Corry, author of I Looked Away

'Little Disasters takes on another topical and emotive issue with the same skill and command Vaughan showed in Anatomy of a Scandal.'

– Cara Hunter, author of All The Rage

'An emotionally intelligent and beautifully written thriller that oozes with tension. Just when I thought I had things figured out, Sarah throws us a curveball which turns everything on its head. Rich and authentic, this is a truly remarkable book'

– Claire Douglas

‘An emotionally terrifying story. Sarah has impressively created characters whose pain and fear is all too real. I could not put this book down’ 

– Heidi Parks, author of Now You See Her

'Taut, clever, compelling and guaranteed to keep you on the edge of your seat…' 

– Paula Hawkins, author of The Girl on the Train

‘Full of painful truths about the brutal aspect of motherhood, this punchy thriller is sharply plotted’ 

– Sunday Mirror

'Vaughan delivers another highly emotional, nail-biting read that you'll tear through in no time at all' 

– heat

'Difficult to put down' 

– Bella

'An absolutely gripping read' 

– Closer

'Emotional and intense' 

– Crime Monthly

'Dark, desperate and gripping' 

– Cosmopolitan

'A brilliantly absorbing read… It twists all the way to a satisfying ending'

– WI Life

'Another thought-provoking psychological drama' 

– Woman & Home

'An in depth exploration and revelation of the complicated psychology of early motherhood' 

– Crime Fiction Lover

‘Painful and realistic, this is a novel that should be read by everyone planning to have a child'

– Literary Review

‘Sarah Vaughan brings to this book the same tension building expertise that made her bestseller Anatomy of a Scandal such a success’ 

– Daily Mail

‘You’ll be kept on the edge of your seat by this carefully crafted novel with multiple twists throughout. It makes for an emotional, often terrifying, and completely gripping read’ 

– Daily Express

'Expertly crafted... Fans of Anatomy may miss the courtroom tension, but the psychological portraiture in this absorbing study of motherhood is just as rich' 

– Sunday Times

'Sarah Vaughan… is back with her fourth novel, the shocking, impossible-to-look-away Little Disasters'

– Observer

'Told from multiple points of view, this raw and painfully real portrayal of insecurities, guilt, shame and postnatal anxiety is complex, nuanced and moving' 

– Guardian

'Thought provoking and delicately executed, this beautifully written novel features characters you will want to both rally and reprimand' 

– The i

'Vaughan's novel is a warning about the terrible effects parenting can have on mental health. It is also a cunningly plotted mystery'

– Daily Mirror

'Another thought-provoking psychological drama from Sarah Vaughan... An important book exploring how everything changes once you become a mother - for good and bad' 

– Woman's Weekly

'In a culture that fetishises motherhood, Sarah Vaughan's novel is an invaluable corrective, a warning about the terrible effects parenting can have on mental health. It is also a very cunningly plotted mystery' 

– Jake Kerridge, Sunday Express

'Sarah Vaughan's latest novel markets itself as a psychological thriller, but is more of an exploration of the intensity of motherhood. Thought provoking and delicately executed' 

– Press Association

'Sarah Vaughan has crafted a psychological drama with great depth' 

– Woman's Own

'Thought provoking and delicately executed, the beautifully written character drama paints a cautionary portrait of motherhood with recognizable characters you'll want to rally and reprimand in equal measure throughout' 

– Irish Examiner

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