‘A heart-piercingly brilliant book about a woman whose personal life put her in the cross-hairs of history’ Hadley Freeman
‘Totally riveting. I couldn’t put it down’ Victoria Hislop
‘Ethel sings out for all women who have been misunderstood and wronged, and refuse to bow down’ Nicholas Shakespeare
‘A shocking tale of betrayal, naivety, misogyny and judicial failure’ Sonia Purnell
‘A historic miscarriage of justice laid bare for our times’ Philippe Sands
Ethel Rosenberg was a supportive wife, loving mother to two small children and courageous idealist who grew up during the Depression with aspirations to become an opera singer.
On 19 June 1953 she became the first woman in the US to be executed for a crime other than murder. She was thirty-seven years old.
Ethel’s conviction for conspiracy to commit espionage on behalf of the Soviet Union followed what FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover called the ‘trial of the century’ in Cold War America and is still controversial. Now, Anne Sebba’s masterly, meticulously researched and deeply moving biography finally tells Ethel’s true story – a life barbarically cut short on the basis of tainted evidence for a crime she almost certainly did not commit.