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Dark new thriller highlights ‘desperation’ in domestic violence

Deborah Knight
Article image for Dark new thriller highlights ‘desperation’ in domestic violence

Domestic violence is at the heart of the story in Debra Oswald’s new book The Family Doctor, in an effort to express the desperation felt in violent situations. 

The Family Doctor follows suburban GP Paula who is devastated by the murder of a friend and her children by their estranged husband and father.

When a patient arrives at her practice who is obviously in danger, Paula is tempted to use her medical skills to get rid of a man who is likely to kill his wife.

“I never would have thought it would be something I’d write about and I never thought I’d write a book where a murder is central to it,” Oswald told Deborah Knight.

“I’m not that kind of writer, really, but I just found myself so churned up about yet another case of a woman, and often children, murdered by an ex-partner.”

While Oswald is not advocating for violence against anyone, no matter the justification, she hopes the story can express the gravity of experiencing violence.

“The book is partly about the system,” she said. “Even when people are trying with goodwill to do the right thing, the system can’t catch every case.”

“All her emotions are real and grounded and she just does this one… Well, then she goes on to do more -”

“Don’t give it away! Spoiler alert!” Deb Knight said.

Click PLAY below to hear the full interview 

Deborah Knight
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