'A sincere and delicate inquiry that moves with grace between public and private pain.'
Helen Garner'Brave and brilliant... this book will change your life.'
Kate Rossmanith studied people for a living, and thought she understood human nature well. But in the wake of her daughter’s birth, the vulnerability and intensity of parenthood took her completely by surprise. Faced with a debilitating insomnia, she spent hours awake reflecting on her own upbringing and the unwelcome role remorse can play in even the most devoted parents’ lives.
Increasingly fascinated with the concept of remorse, she was drawn to the criminal courts, observing case after case. She talked to criminals, lawyers and judges alike, trying to answer the fundamental question: how can you know whether a person is ever truly sorry?
But it soon became clear the project was creating seismic shifts in Kate’s own life. The more she learnt, the more she saw how her relationship with her father, who for many years was a distant and often angry man, was steeped in remorse. The more she learnt, the more she saw the faultlines in her marriage, widening under the strains of parenthood. And ever present was a family history sketched across war-torn Europe, with the seeds of heartache taking root in Australia.
'A moving investigation into the inner-workings of remorse and forgiveness, not just as a legal concept, but a tool to opening up our common humanity. Kate is a brilliant storyteller.'
'Intimate, revealing and fascinating, Rossmanith explores one of the most troubling expectations of those caught up in the criminal justice system, the performance of remorse.’