Published: 2 March
A novel of searing emotional truth, told with the relentless pull of a thriller, from the award-winning creator of Offspring.
Paula is a dedicated suburban GP, who is devastated by the murder of a friend and her children by their estranged husband and father. Stacey and the children had been staying with her after fleeing his control, and Paula is haunted by the thought that she couldn’t protect them when they most needed it. How had she missed the warning signs? How had she failed to keep them safe?
Not long after, a patient with suspicious injuries brings her anxious young son into Paula’s surgery. The woman admits that her husband hurts her, but she’s terrified to leave for fear of escalating the violence, and defeated by the consistent failures of the law to help her.
Can Paula go against everything she believes to make sure one woman is saved, one child spared? She isn’t motivated by revenge. She’s desperately trying to prevent a tragedy . . .
A riveting, provocative novel about women’s fury, traumatic grief, new love, deep friendship, and the preciousness of life, The Family Doctor asks the questions: Should you cling to faith in a flawed system, or take control the only way you can? Can a good person justify taking a life to save a life?
PRAISE FOR THE FAMILY DOCTOR
‘The Family Doctor is a compelling thriller – fast-paced, gripping and frightening. But is more than that because it is a story that draws desperately needed attention to domestic abuse in this country, to institutional indifference, to the devaluing of women’s lives. The Family Doctor is a cry for change.’ Sofie Laguna, Miles Franklin Award-winning author of The Eye of the Sheep and Infinite Splendours
‘Brilliant. So compelling on so many levels.’ Chris Hammer, author of Scrublands
‘Debra Oswald is always deft at capturing the nuances of female friendship and romantic attraction, but this time she brings them to a pitch of pulse-racing intensity. Delving into the dark world of domestic violence and society’s abject failure to protect those most vulnerable, she has produced a gripping thriller, brimming with heart and intellect.’ Geraldine Brooks, author of The Secret Chord