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Rosalind B. Penfold walked into what she thought would be a love story – with a recently widowed executive and his young children. It turned out to be the kind of life she had never experienced before. While many people might keep a diary, Rosalind drew what she witnessed – as it was happening – in harrowing detail, and then hid the images in a cardboard box. Now, many years later, her drawings have been compiled into this shocking, graphic account.

Her experience – of what it was like to be enmeshed in an abusive relationship, and how she eventually found the wisdom she needed to get out, will educate, inform and astound. Her images illustrate many of the known warning signs of intimate partner violence, and answer the common question, “Why did you stay?’ Many women in similar circumstances have said, “If you’ve never been there, you wouldn’t understand.” Rosalind B. Penfold’s images take you there. Disturbing, yet compelling, they show the destructive force of domestic abuse facing many families today.

Rosalind B. Penfold says, “I believe I turned to art instinctively because I couldn’t believe what was happening to me. I needed to see it in black and white. Ironically, although my illustrations give me distance, they give others a close-up. They turned out to be far more personal than prose could ever be. I am hoping that my book will lead to more open discussion, and a greater understanding of the nature of domestic abuse. Abuse needs to be recognized, named, and stopped. I feel strongly that this is not only my story. It is the story of millions of families across North America. I have chosen a pseudonym because there are many ‘Rosalinds’ and I was just one of them.”

Represented by Samantha Haywood .

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