W. Somerset Maugham worked hard to cover his tracks for most of his life, and for good reason. Oscar Wilde's trial was front-page news and with it came the sudden revelation that discretion was not enough to keep homosexuals out of jail. Maugham eventually married and had a daughter, but he carried on affairs with men his entire life. Selina Hastings writes in her new biography The Secret Lives of Somerset Maugham, "The trial of Oscar Wilde was to cast a long shadow, and for 70 years Maugham's generation had to live with the very real fear of blackmail, exposure, public scandal, and arrest." Maugham did an excellent job destroying all evidence of gay love affairs from the first half of his life, and Hastings is left to piece together tiny clues — a recurring name used for characters in Maugham's fiction, for example, or the gender neutral pronouns in Maugham's autobiography The Summing Up.