This House of Grief

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A true-crime recounting of the horrific events on Father’s Day, Sept 4, 2005, in Winchelsea, Australia, which resulted in the drowning of three children – Jai, Tyler, and Bailey Farquharson – and the trial of their father, Robert Farquharson. Told in the first person by a journalist, herself a grandmother, who observed first-hand the stories and claims of each involved, this is a tale for students of human behavior, in all its dark and excruciating complexity, and is not for the emotionally feint of heart.

With much of the story involving the legal proceedings of the criminal case, and the evidence, as it exists, against Robert, this detailed and insightful analysis provides up-close observations of a man whose behavior, for anyone with a beating heart, is unfathomable, whatever conclusion one may eventually come to about the motivation of his actions and his eventual culpability. Hardest of all to witness is Cindy, his ex-wife, portrayed here in the shifting sands, over time, of her unimaginable grief, as she is seen to initially remain loyal to Robert, throughout the revelations of his initial trial, unable to see this crime as anything but a terrible accident.

Without revealing the twisted path justice will take, true-crime buffs will appreciate the thoughtful and compassionate stance, personified by the voice of the author, allowing one to eavesdrop on criminal trial proceedings, as they unfold, as she attempts to extricate the strategies of both the Crown and Defense, and how they do play out.

A non-sensationalized (if such a thing is possible) and heart-rending look at what became one of the most publicized and emotional cases ever documented in Australia, this is a ultimately a story about grief, loss, and tragically, the fine line between love and hate, and the hideous possibilities of a vengeful heart.

A great big thank you to Netgalley, the publisher, and the author, for an ARC of this book. All thoughts presented are my own.


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