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Joe Cinque's Consolation : A True Story of Death, Grief and the Law - Helen Garner

Joe Cinque's Consolation

A True Story of Death, Grief and the Law

Paperback

Published: 1st September 2006
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A TRUE STORY OF DEATH, GRIEF AND THE LAW

In October 1997, a clever young law student at ANU made a bizarre plan to murder her devoted boyfriend after a dinner party at their house. Some of the dinner guests – most of them university students – had heard rumours of the plan. Nobody warned Joe Cinque. He died one Sunday, in his own bed, of a massive dose of Rohypnol and heroin. His girlfriend and her best friend were charged with murder.

Helen Garner followed the trials in the ACT Supreme Court. Compassionate but unflinching, this is a book about how and why Joe Cinque died. It probes the gap between ethics and the law; examines the helplessness of the courts in the face of what we think of as "evil"; and explores conscience, culpability, and the battered ideal of duty of care.

It is a masterwork from one of Australia's greatest writers.

About the Author

Helen Garner was born in Geelong in 1942. She has been publishing novels, short stories, non-fiction and journalism since 1977 when her first novel, Monkey Grip, appeared. Her most recent books are The First Stone, True Stories, My Hard Heart and The Feel of Steel. She lives in Melbourne.

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Joe Cinque's Consolation
 
4.3

(based on 3 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

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    (1)

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100%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Well written (3)

Cons

No Cons

Best Uses

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Reviewed by 3 customers

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4.0

a thought-provoking read

By 

from Thirroul

About Me Bookworm

Verified Reviewer

Pros

  • Deserves Multiple Readings
  • Informative
  • Relevant
  • Well Written

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Gift
    • Older Readers
    • Travel Reading

    Comments about Joe Cinque's Consolation:

    4.5 stars Joe Cinque's Consolation. A True Story of Death, Grief and the Law is a non-fiction book by award -winning Australian author, Helen Garner. In March 1999, a respected senior journalist suggested to Garner that she write about the murder, in October 1997, of young civil engineer, Joe Cinque. At first reluctant, Garner became intrigued by the case. The bones were this: Cinque's girlfriend and her best friend had been charged with murdering him by giving him a massive dose of Rohypnol, then injecting him with her0in.

    After an aborted joint jury trial, each accused was being tried separately in a judge-only trial. By the time Garner arrived in Canberra for the trial, the prosecution's case for the girlfriend, law student Anu Singh, was already done, and the defence was presenting their case. Garner attended the remainder of that trial, the sentencing hearing and then the trial of law student Madhavi Rao, Anu's best friend. She also read through all the transcripts of the aborted trial and the trial she had attended.

    In her book Garner includes discussions she had with journalists, with AFP officer involved, with other judges, and eventually with the presiding judge, Justice Crispin. She includes comments overheard and interviews with Joe's parents Maria and Nino Cinque as well as his family and friends. She also interviewed the parents of the accused, Dr Pradyumn Singh and Mrs Dr Surinder Singh. Conspicuous by their absence are any words from the two accused, who declined to be interviewed.

    This is no clinical analysis of the case. Garner describes all involved: defence counsel, prosecutor, judge, accused, witnesses and those in the public gallery. She reports not just testimony, but also behaviour, attitude and body language, showing just how very human they all are. She does not hesitate to include her own opinions, reactions, feelings, and moods, and even the reactions of those who heard that she may be writing a book about it.

     
    5.0

    Yes

    By 

    from Uralla Northern Tablelands NSW

    About Me Bookworm

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Deserves Multiple Readings
    • Easy To Understand
    • Informative
    • Inspirational
    • Relevant
    • Well Written

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Older Readers
      • Younger Readers

      Comments about Joe Cinque's Consolation:

      I love Helen Garner as a writer and was immediately drawn to this book as a true human interest and crime story combined. I have always loved the mix and Helen Garner put it all together so eloquently and coherently. Her doggedness with the subject, especially from the legal standpoint, was mesmerising. It is a book for all ages but especially for those who have, or have had, troubled relationships and the risks that can be just below the surface. The drug use adds another dimension. This book has absolutely no faults

      (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

       
      4.0

      couldnt put it down

      By 

      from sydney

      About Me Casual Reader

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Easy To Understand
      • Well Written

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Travel Reading

        Comments about Joe Cinque's Consolation:

        easy read, interesting story. couldn't put it down.

        Displaying reviews 1-3

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        Helen Garner

        Helen Garner’s first novel, Monkey Grip, was published in 1977, and immediately established her as an original voice on the Australian literary scene. She is known for incorporating and adapting her personal experiences in her fiction, something that has brought her both praise and criticism, particularly with her novels, Monkey Grip and The Spare Room.

        Throughout her career, Garner has written both fiction and non-fiction. She attracted controversy with her book The First Stone about a sexual harassment scandal in a university college. She has also written for film and theatre, and has consistently won awards for her work.

        In subsequent books, she has continued to adapt her personal experiences. Her later novels include The Children’s Bach and Cosmo Cosmolino. In 2008 she returned to fiction writing with the publication of The Spare Room, a fictional treatment of caring for a dying cancer patient, based on the illness and death of Garner’s friend Jenya Osborne. She has also published several short story collections: Honour & Other People’s Children: two stories, Postcards from Surfers and My Hard Heart: Selected Fictions.

        Her most recent book is This House of Grief.

        Visit Helen Garner's Booktopia Author Page


        ISBN: 9780330421782
        ISBN-10: 0330421786
        Audience: General
        Format: Paperback
        Language: English
        Number Of Pages: 348
        Published: 1st September 2006
        Publisher: Pan Macmillan Australia
        Country of Publication: AU
        Dimensions (cm): 19.8 x 13.0  x 2.3
        Weight (kg): 0.27
        Edition Number: 1