Sister in Law

Sister in Law

Fighting for Justice in a System Designed by Men


Discover the essential, must-read book about how the UK legal system is failing women, as told by one of Britain’s foremost lawyers.

'This is a brilliant and important book. Harriet is a trailblazer and has done so much to get justice for so many women.' - Victoria Derbyshire

'Compelling, inspiring, horrifying and humbling in equal measure. Everybody should read it.' - Professor Dame Sue Black, author of All That Remain

‘Every feminist should know Harriet Wistrich’s name. There is no one better to learn from if you want to Get Shit Done.’ Helen Lewis, author of Difficult Women


For more than quarter of a century, Harriet Wistrich has fought the corner of people from all walks of life let down by our justice system.

She has been at the forefront of some historic and ground-breaking legal victories, from helping the victims of taxi driver and serial rapist John Worboys, to representing a pioneering group of the women caught up in the ‘spy cops’ scandal – women deceived into forming long-term relationships with men later revealed to be undercover police officers.

Litigation can be a long and rocky path of pitfalls and dead ends and there are defeats as well as gains, hours of painstaking work as well as courtroom drama.

It takes collaboration, extraordinary tenacity and huge compassion, but Harriet Wistrich is proof that it is possible to demand better justice and to bring about important change.

Exploring landmark cases, Sister in Law covers the shocking true stories demonstrating that, terrifyingly often, the law is not-fit-for-purpose for half the population and shines a feminist light on the landscape of arcane laws and systems skewed towards men.


Praise for Sister in Law:

‘Shocking, compelling and invigorating... A must read from one of the foremost feminist human rights lawyers today' Keina Yoshida & Jen Robinson

'A brilliant lawyer. A brilliant book' - Baroness Helena Kennedy KC

'Harriet's innovative, intense and courageous commitment to safeguarding basic rights, is compellingly set out in every chapter.' - Michael Mansfield KC

‘A vivid account of cases in which the justice system has spectacularly failed women but also of how injustices can be challenged if only we know enough and care enough to do so.’ Rt Hon Lady Hale DBE

'If I was ever in trouble, I would want Harriet Wistrich fighting in my corner.' - Emeritus Professor David Wilson, author of My Life with Murderers


  • Harriet Wistrich has long offered a voice to the voiceless – those ordinary men, and especially women, who have been silenced, ignored, overlooked and talked down to. Her career is a testimony to her values, dedication, hard work and insight and as I read Sister in Law I realised that if I was ever in trouble I would want Harriet fighting in my corner.
    Emeritus Professor David Wilson

About the author

Harriet Wistrich

Harriet Wistrich is the founder and director of the Centre for Women's Justice and a solicitor of over 25 years' experience. She has worked for many years with civil liberties firm Birnberg Peirce, acting in many high-profile cases around violence against women, including on behalf of women who challenged the police and parole board in the John Worboys case, women deceived in relationships by undercover police officers and women appealing murder convictions for killing abusive partners. She is also a founder member of the campaign group Justice for Women. Among other accolades, she was named Liberty Human Rights Lawyer of the Year 2014, Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year 2018 for public law and Law Society Gazette personality of the year 2019, and awarded an honorary doctorate of laws by Kent University in 2022.
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