This page contains domestic violence books we recommend. There is a mix of true-life stories and more academic works. This list will be added to frequently.
by Deb Thomson
When Deborah Thomson met Wayne, she was a shy, introverted 24-year-old student. He was a loud charismatic young man. His temper was an issue but one she hoped they could work on. Four years later, the married couple now ran a business together, and their first child was born. Yet, any dreams of peaceful family life were quickly crushed by Wayne's increasingly violent and controlling behaviour. Life turned into a cycle of hope, fear and pain, and her marriage into a prison from which there was no escaping. It lasted 17 years. Based on the journals the author kept throughout the ordeal, Whose Life Is It Anyway is a chilling memoir of her agonising years living and working with her abuser.
By Jess Hill
Domestic abuse is a national emergency- one in four Australian women has experienced violence from a man she was intimate with. But too often we ask the wrong question- why didn't she leave? We should be asking- why did he do it?
Investigative journalist Jess Hill puts perpetrators - and the systems that enable them - in the spotlight. See What You Made Me Do is a deep dive into the abuse so many women and children experience - abuse that is often reinforced by the justice system they trust to protect them. Critically, it shows that we can drastically reduce domestic violence - not in generations to come, but today.
Combining forensic research with riveting storytelling,See What You Made Me Do radically rethinks how to confront the national crisis of fear and abuse in our homes.
Audiobook $14.95 for one credit
By Jena Parks
A page-turner. A true tale of wickedness, despair, and redemption. Not to be missed.
Born into a Dark and Secretive World of Domestic Violence
”What kind of life is this you live? Can you remember even one day you didn’t go to bed afraid and wake up afraid?”
These are the words Jena Parks says, looking in the mirror as a child.
Imagine being a child and every day a desperate struggle to survive. This was the life Jena endured from birth until the day she escaped the living nightmare of her father’s abuse.
In The Fear of the Blow, Jena tells her candid personal story of the cruelty, abuse, and terror her father inflicted upon her, her brother, and her mother. She provides an insider perspective on the horrors of domestic violence and child abuse that inform and inspire the reader to help those who struggle.
by Stacey Jameson
This honest and open autobiography is the true story of a young woman trapped in a relationship that was violent and abusive. Coercive control drove her to the depths of despair.
Stacey Jameson had a lack of self-esteem derived from her early childhood. Growing up and dealing with her parents’ divorce, she felt nothing more than an inconvenience to her depressive mother. With severe feelings of inadequacy, she was desperate to be loved and feel that she belonged. When she was a teenager, she met Leon, and fell in love. She had never felt so happy. They had one common denominator; they were both brought up in volatile homes. This was the foundation for a turbulent and destructive relationship. Stacey was welcomed with open arms into the bosom of Leon’s twisted family; naive and impressionable, she finally felt secure and loved.
Stacey’s childhood had made her timid and compliant. Leon’s childhood had made him controlling and narcissistic. Gradually Stacey found herself in an unhappy relationship where her partner thrived on being abusive, yet she still loved him. She was coercively controlled into doing things that just were not part of her character. She was so manipulated; she believed she did not deserve any better.
So often people look on with judgement at others who are in an abusive relationship and say, “Why don’t they just leave?”.
Stacey’s story, just one of millions, describes her journey and why it’s just not so simple to do for people who find themselves caught up in a destructive relationship that they just cannot escape from.
By Lisa Lee
True story of a Domestic Violence relationship. I once believed the only way I'd get out of my relationship was in a body bag. I wrote this book to assist my healing and to answer the question I was asked most often "Why did you stay for so long?" I hope to create awareness of abusive relationships by telling my story of how it began, why I stayed for as long as I did and what I had to do to start the healing process. It is my vision to educate some and give hope to others. This is proof that there is life after Domestic Violence.
by Broken to Brilliant
Proceeds to charity supporting women emerging from domestic violence
Bronze medallist, eLit Book Awards 2017
“That would never happen to me. I’m too strong. I would walk out.” Those were KC Andrews’ thoughts as a trainee nurse listening to a lecture on domestic violence. But when it happened to her, it took years to finally leave.
She has now rebuilt her life from the ashes of a brutal marriage, and along the way met other women who have survived the fog of fear and feelings of worthlessness – and then on the outside, endured the disbelief and bureaucratic bungles of those who should have helped.
But now, each woman’s brilliance is emerging once again.
Each one tells her unique story to help readers understand the many different shapes domestic violence can take. And yet the focus of this book is not on the horror, but the healing. Each woman shares the skills, techniques and attitudes that helped her to shine once again.
This book is for anyone who is living in an abusive relationship, knows someone who is, or has emerged and is looking for a roadmap out of darkness into the light of new beginnings.
Broken to Brilliant is an Australian Not For Profit Charity where Domestic Violence Survivors Mentor other Survivors to re-establish successful lives. These courageous women are mothers, accountants, nurses, managers, models, executive managers, sales trainers and account executives. Each at a different stage in re-establishment and recovery, they have banded together to share how they have rebuilt their lives.
by Lesley Laing
Domestic violence affects all areas of Social Work. This book shows how Social Workers can intervene in everyday practice with victims, their families and perpetrators of domestic abuse. It provides students with knowledge of theory, research and policy to put directly in practice across a variety of legal and service-user contexts. The authors draw on their extensive experience as practitioners and researchers in the field, placing particular focus on evidence-based practice. Topics covered include:- Child protection- Interprofessional collaboration- The policy and legal context- Working with women- Working with men. Each chapter begins with a case study and concludes with reflective questions to highlight practice dilemmas and challenge students to reflect critically. Further reading from a rich range of sources guides readers to expand their knowledge. This book will be valuable reading for students studying domestic violence, child protection, and family social work, as well as practitioners of Social Work.
by Rachel Louise Snyder
AN ESQUIRE AND NEW YORK TIMES BOOK OF THE YEAR
An award-winning journalist’s exploration of the domestic violence epidemic, and how to combat it.
An average of 137 women are killed by familial violence across the globe every day. In the UK alone, two women die each week at the hands of their partners, and in the US domestic violence homicides have risen by 32 percent since 2017. The WHO deems it a ‘global epidemic’. Yet public understanding of this urgent problem remains catastrophically low.
Journalist Rachel Louise Snyder was no exception. Despite years of experience reporting on international conflicts, when it came to violence in the domestic sphere, she believed all the common assumptions: that it was a fate for the unlucky few, a matter of bad choices and cruel environments. That if things were dire enough, victims would leave. That violence inside the home was private. And, perhaps most of all, that unless you stand at the receiving end of a punch, it has nothing to do with you.
All this changed when Snyder began talking to the victims and perpetrators whose stories she tells in this book. Fearlessly reporting from the front lines of the epidemic, in No Visible Bruises she interviews men who have murdered their families, women who have nearly been murdered, and people who have grown up besieged by familial aggression, painting a vivid and nuanced picture of its reality. She talks to experts in violence prevention and law enforcement, revealing how domestic abuse has its roots in our education, economic, health, and justice systems, and how by tackling these origins we can render it preventable.
MP3 CD: $33.70
by Lundy Bancroft
In this ground-breaking bestseller, Lundy Bancroft—a counselor who specializes in working with abusive men—uses his knowledge about how abusers think to help women recognize when they are being controlled or devalued, and to find ways to get free of an abusive relationship.
He says he loves you. So...why does he do that?
You’ve asked yourself this question again and again. Now you have the chance to see inside the minds of angry and controlling men—and change your life. In Why Does He Do That? you will learn about:
• The early warning signs of abuse
• The nature of abusive thinking
• Myths about abusers
• Ten abusive personality types
• The role of drugs and alcohol
• What you can fix, and what you can’t
• And how to get out of an abusive relationship safely
“This is without a doubt the most informative and useful book yet written on the subject of abusive men. Women who are armed with the insights found in these pages will be on the road to recovering control of their lives.”—Jay G. Silverman, Ph.D., Director, Violence Prevention Programs, Harvard School of Public Health
MP3 CD: $33.75
by Helen Walmsley-Johnson
"Coercive control may have recently been made illegal in Britain, but not many women dare to open up about it. Helen Walmsley-Johnson is an exception" The Times
Not all abuse leaves a mark - a powerful memoir of coercive control
Helen's first husband controlled her life, from the people she saw to what was in her bank account. He alienated her from friends and family and even from their three daughters. Eventually, he threw her out and she painfully began to rebuild her life.
Then, divorced and in her early forties, she met Franc. Kind, charming, considerate Franc. For ten years she would be in his thrall, even when he too was telling her what to wear, what to eat, even what to think.
Look What You Made Me Do is her candid and utterly gripping memoir of how she was trapped by a smiling abuser, not once but twice. It is a vital guide to recognising, understanding and surviving this sinister form of abuse and its often terrible legacy. It is also an inspirational account of how one woman found the courage to walk away.
Audiobook: $14.96 for 1 credit
MP3 CD: $29.95
Our first book recommendations will be added soon.