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The Family Doctor

The recent Women’s March 4 Justice marches around Australia have heightened the awareness of violence again women and the fact that there is still much work to be done to keep women safe; a real problem in society. In her well written book, “The Family Doctor” Debra Oswald explores this complex and complicated issue; resulting in a most timely and powerful narrative.  

Anita, journalist and court reporter and Paula, a suburban family GP, are devastated when their childhood friendship of twenty five years is shattered by the murder of Stacey and her children by their father, in an extreme case of domestic violence. The friends’ inability to prevent this tragedy has resulted in a sense of guilt; the back story highlights the red flags. Paula becomes extra vigilant for signs of abuse and takes the law into her own hands; setting herself up as judge and executioner.  Meanwhile Anita is consumed with the failings of the judicial system to protect women; how to stop the violence and keep them safe. 

I highly recommend this thought provoking, suspenseful, engrossing book, however some readers may find it a confronting and difficult read. This gripping thriller explores not only the issue of domestic violence but also those of medical ethics and the justice system, while intertwining the themes of female friendship, revenge, grief, new love and resilience. Book Clubs will find this an excellent vehicle to instigate robust discussions around the moral dilemma ‘Can you justify the taking a life to save others?’

Author Debra Oswald
Publisher Allen & Unwin
ISBN 9781760877781
Website https://www.allenandunwin.com
Distributor Allen & Unwin
Released March 2021