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Jenny Sanford Memoir to Be Published Ahead of Schedule

5 years ago
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Jenny Sanford's memoir -- "Staying True" -- will be released Feb. 5, well before the planned May publication date. The first lady of South Carolina is nothing if not efficient and, as usual, a few steps ahead of her soon-to-be-ex-husband, S.C. Gov. Mark Sanford. It is expected that the two will be in divorce court when the book is published.

"In this candid and compelling memoir, the first lady of South Carolina reveals the private ordeal behind her very public betrayal -- and offers inspiration for anyone struggling to keep faith during life's most trying times," according to the statement from the book's publisher, Ballantine Books, a division of Random House.

When her husband confessed an affair after leaving the state for five days in June 2009 for a rendezvous with his Argentine mistress, Jenny Sanford became known and was hailed for what she didn't do. Unlike wronged wives before her -- and the list is long -- she did not stand by the governor offering support and a stricken look. Though she was feeling "shock and anguish," as the book's publicity puts it, "that he had not ended the affair when she believed he had," she packed up with the couple's four sons and moved out of the governor's mansion to Sullivan's Island.

A former Wall Street investment banker, the Georgetown-educated Jenny Sanford was involved in her husband's political campaigns as he eventually rose to governor and was touted as a candidate for a 2012 presidential run. After his term as governor is up after this year, Mark Sanford's political career -- barring a miracle -- is over.

Jenny Sanford
, in contrast, is just getting started. She has earned pop culture credibility with an appearance in Vogue and a spot on Barbara Walters' list of "10 Most Fascinating People of 2009." While she waits for word on her effort to trademark her name, she can tell her story at

While she has ruled out running for office, Sanford has endorsed Republican state Rep. Nikki Haley in the race to replace her husband in 2010. And as S.C. first lady, she even presided over a holiday open house last month at the governor's mansion, where she greeted guests a few feet from the husband she had just taken steps to divorce while he was hoping for a reconciliation.

Most of all, as the book publicity emphasizes, she tried to privately raise her children "to be men of character, even in the face of the lies their father has told."

With other stories rapidly feeding the public appetite for scandal, is there still interest in Jenny Sanford's tale before, during and after a South American trip made her famous? We'll see on Feb. 5.

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