Writing is my passion. I love using words to evoke moods, to capture a scene, to revive a moment in the past. It’s magic stuff—world building and time travel rolled into one, and all done with twenty-six letters…
I also have something to say. I have worked in support roles for child protection and public mental health services, helping to develop, implement and review policies and programs. I always admired the resilience of the clients/consumers; and the courage and generosity with which they were willing to share their story in order to help others. I also admired the dedication of their caseworkers and clinicians—committed professionals, most of them, who at times achieved fantastic outcomes against all odds. Sadly, I have also read too many clinical reviews and post-mortem reports that left me crestfallen.
So I set out to write a novel that touches upon the systemic ‘blind spots’ that impede service delivery, particularly in child protection and foster care. The focus on ‘case finding’ and throughput, at the expense of providing a meaningful service to kids placed in care. The unrealistically high case loads. The failure to learn from child death inquiries.
The Best of Intentions tells the story of Gecko, a boy who’s been through foster care’s revolving doors; and Libby, a highly intelligent Year 12 student who struggles with depression and an eating disorder. Enter Kurt, a well-meaning but erratic social worker and—by his own admission—the world’s worst Buddhist. What could possibly go wrong?
Dr Kate Ryan of Writers Victoria described The Best of Intentions as “highly engaging, complex and well-plotted (…) an intelligent and moving novel.”
Self-Publishing Review rated it five stars, calling it “a vital and timely novel” and “a powerfully moving read” (you can read their in-depth review here).
So don’t miss out on this novel if you care about social justice, love novels set in Melbourne, or are just looking for a gripping story for your book club reading list.
The Best of Intentions is available in paperback and e-book format. The homepage for my novel provides more detail and includes links to Amazon, Apple and other distribution outlets.