Why was homosexuality made illegal in the UK in the summer of 1885 so suddenly and unexpectedly – leading to the persecution of tens of thousands of people over the following eight decades?

Scandal looks at the strange story behind that decision, the furore that tore apart Irish society the previous year – and retraces the journey of the author’s ancestor who fled from arrest to London at the height of the affair.

But even in London he wasn’t safe. He managed to escape persecution a second time, ten years later, in a moment of fear, which swept though the gay community and was unprecedented in modern British history.

This is a groundbreaking book, part history, part detective story, which looks back at the moment British society turned against homosexuality, and why it happened.

You can also buy this book for Kindle readers here.

SKU: 9780955226373 Categories: ,


  1. David Boyle

    Iain King, author, Last Prophecy of Rome, writes:
    This is an historical detective story of the best sort. The book starts in 1895, describing the mood and events of London society, and why certain individuals fled to Paris. It then takes in a century of developments, explaining why and how homophobia was entrenched into English law, unearthing several curious events in the process. Some of the anecdotes are both wonderful and remarkable, such as how the manager of a Dublin bank was siphoning off funds in the 1880s until he was chased out by police, and how the author’s own great-great grandfather escaped a cholera epidemic in Spain (also in the 1880s).

    What really strikes a reader is the deep and thoughtful research which has gone into this book. The author has obviously spent a huge amount of work putting this together, selecting the best material, and presenting it in an intriguing format. The result is very impressive. It’s very readable, fascinating and well informed real life story – historical detective work at its best.

    With LGBT rights now taken for granted thoughout most of Europe and America, this book offers a valuable perspective on a less enlightened time, not so long ago.

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