A tragic story of a daughter being in the troubling position of having to advise authorities that her own mother has murdered three men.
The story starA tragic story of a daughter being in the troubling position of having to advise authorities that her own mother has murdered three men.
The story starts in the 1940’s when having already abandoned four children and another husband (unbeknown to anyone at this time), Dulcie Bodsworth murders in a calculation fashion, the murder of her current husband, and the father of her three children.
Hazel is 9 at this time and knows something isn’t quite right. Not only does she witness canoodling and secrets between her mother and another man, she knows her beloved dad would not have fallen in a river and drowned. A poor family, living in tents along a country NSW town, her father returns from hospital physically incapacitated by rheumatoid arthritis. Not a well man at all, Dulcie feigns love and understanding and tucks him in to bed at 6.00pm, while she goes to sleep in the other tent, with the other man! Hazel’s father is dead, presumed drowned, the next day. Years later on exhumation, large traces of arsenic were detected.
Thus proceeds two more murders, Dulcie is a manipulative woman, putting on airs and graces and always a good image in public. Never forming close enough ties in a community so she can make a hasty exit whenever the mood strikes. She even baked cakes and scones for the local constabulary! Years later she forms a friendship with and baked for Morris Iemma, who considered nominating Dulcie for an Order of Australia Medal. With a quiet word from the local police, this was quickly abandoned.
Dulcie lacked empathy. Whilst not having been mentioned in the book, I would say she was a psychopath. She abandoned her children, forced them children to lie, failed to provide any stability (at times they were to sleep upright the car!) and lied to all who knew her. She was a trouble maker at her nursing home and even attempted to start a fire there. She lit numerous fires in her unit that she occupied before going into care.
Hazel suffered a nervous breakdown and realised her mother must be made accountable, and proceeded to stealthily advise another township’s police department of her mother’s wrongs. Hazel was lucky to find a loving husband, and despite Dulcie trying to kill him also, who always stood by her. Together they raised a family and fostered 101 children. Hazel states this was her way of making amends for the sins of her mother. Every child deserves to be loved, cared for and heard. This is about the only good I could see come out of this tragic story. She stood by her mother, continuing to visit until her death, stating she did not love her mother, but was doing the right thing by not abandoning her, as her mother did her.
Well written by Hazel, with contributions by Janet Fife-Yeomans using court documents and comments by friends and acquaintances; no one would ever forget Dulcie Bodsworth....more
This was another Rachael Johns book I was underwhelmed with. I have nothing I can pinpoint, but a general lack of interest in the subject matter. I foThis was another Rachael Johns book I was underwhelmed with. I have nothing I can pinpoint, but a general lack of interest in the subject matter. I found again, here, that there is nothing to be excited about, nothing to make me want to take an extra trip in my car to keep going with the story.
A wedding dress hunt starts the story, a young woman wants to find her mothers wedding dress by scouring the second hand charity stores, then onto a Facebook search. This happened a little neatly. The two women involved with the hunting down of the dress become intertwined in another familial drama, then many families become involved in the story line. I wasn't taken with any of them, and found it to be quite dull.
I always like important and topical themes to be discussed in fiction; and it was here. Forced adoption in Australia and mental health were quite heavily placed themes. This story was told rather than discovered and lacked definite spark....more
Podcasts are all the rage now; I don’t listen to them as I constantly have an audiobook on the go. This book originated from a hugely successful podcaPodcasts are all the rage now; I don’t listen to them as I constantly have an audiobook on the go. This book originated from a hugely successful podcast in conjunction with the ABC: https://www.abc.net.au/radio/programs...
Written by another successful Australian journalist (this is the second book penned by the same type of author I have read in the same amount of weeks) who invested a huge amount of personal and professional time in re-examining an Australian cold case originating from the 1980’s. Done so with the permission of the deceased two adult sons, Rachel attacks this case with a respectful amount of hard work and sheer determination. Also to be commended for his tireless hard work is former Detective Ron Iddles who worked side by side with Rachael.
I want to rave about her journalistic skills and commitment to getting to the bottom of this senseless murder of a single mother in Melbourne, but unfortunately my passion (or should I say equal measure of revulsion) for this book is the involvement of the Catholic Church. Specifically, the relationships with Priests and young boys. Innocent children. Children who look up to these figures as an authoritative figure who by nature of their position are meant to LEAD BY EXAMPLE by showing compassion and Godly love. I don’t want this issue to turn into a rant, so that is enough about that.
Rachael did not leave any stone unturned in her pursuit in solving this case, she uncovered blatant mistakes and/or cover ups. My opinion is that the Church is involved in this. Viewers became snippy on line when episodes were on a break, and the author states that this is real life non-fiction, she can’t make things up when the case headed into colder waters again.
A compelling read, fabulously narrated by the author, this comes highly recommended by this satisfied reader. True crime fans will love it. As a conclusion to this review, I would like to add the content of this book may trigger emotions among the reader in relation to childhood sexual abuse....more