COMING SOON - PUBLISHED 1st OCTOBER
Author: Peter Cardwell
About the book:
Special advisers are a key part of the government, yet who they are and what they do is much misunderstood. Key advisers to Cabinet ministers and the Prime Minister since the 1970s, their role is shrouded in mystery, despite acres of newsprint devoted to particularly high-profile members of the cohort, such as Alastair Campbell and Dominic Cummings. Peter Cardwell's book lifts the lid on the people Piers Morgan called 'these miserable little creatures', revealing who spads are, how Cabinet ministers use and interact with them, how much influence they have and how they deal with the civil service.
Featuring numerous anecdotes and sometimes almost unbelievable stories about what actually happens in a spad's daily life - from dealing with counter-terror emergencies in COBRA to explaining what a dental dam is to the Justice Secretary, to having your inside leg measured in a Minister of the Crown's office - this book has it all. Part history, part how-to (and how-not-to) guide and part insider account drawing on the author's own experiences - particularly in the Cameron, May and early months of the Johnson administrations - The Secret Life of Spads will inform and entertain anyone who has ever wondered what these shadowy figures really do all day.
About the author:
Peter Cardwell served as a special adviser in the UK government for three and a half years. He worked for four Cabinet ministers in four departments: the Northern Ireland Office; the Home Office; the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government; and the Ministry of Justice. After being educated in Northern Ireland, he went to St Hugh's College, Oxford, before winning a Fulbright scholarship to the Columbia School of Journalism, New York. He was a broadcast journalist for ten years, working for the BBC in London, Washington DC, New York and Belfast, as well as for Sky News, Channel 5 News and ITV's Good Morning Britain. He is a frequent political commentator for the UK and international broadcast and print media. In his spare time, he volunteers as chairman of a trust for student journalists, mentors a teenager in the care system and spends time with his rescue cat, Jack. He lives in London and Richhill, County Armagh.
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