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ABOUT THE BOOK AND THE AUTHOR
The Blood on My Hands is an autobiography by Shannon O’Leary. It was published in Feburary 2016 and is available for sale on Amazon.
Set in 1960s and ‘70s Australia, The Blood on My Hands is the dramatic tale of Shannon O’Leary’s childhood years, growing up with an abusive father, who was also a serial killer. No one, not even the authorities, would help O’Leary and her family. The responses of those whom O’Leary and her immediate family reached out to for help are almost as disturbing as the crimes of her violent father. Relatives were afraid to bring disgrace to the family’s good name, nuns condemned the child’s objections as disobedience and noncompliance, and laws at the time prevented the police from interfering unless someone was killed.
The Blood on My Hands is a heartbreaking—yet riveting—narrative of a childhood spent in pain and terror, betrayed by the people who are supposed to provide safety and understanding. The strength and courageous resilience it took for O’Leary to not just survive and escape from her father, but to flourish, thrive, and triumph over the unimaginable trauma she endured as a child is both powerful and moving.
“Intense, gripping, and psychologically demanding of its readers, The Blood on My Hands is like no other and pulls no punches in its accounts, making for an unusually vivid recommendation for those interested in especially candid and often shocking memoirs of childhood abuse and survival under the nearly-impossible circumstance of living with a father who was a serial killer.” – Diane Donovan for Midwest Book Review
“The confusion, uncertainty, and sickening foreboding ring true and offer vital insights into the experience of abuse, including the fact that victims had few options, especially in the 1960s.” – Kirkus Reviews
“The work is crisp and painfully honest, moving from scene to scene both artfully and factually. Both the mundane and the impossible are treated with equal care, masterfully knitting together the various pieces of O’Leary’s tormented past.” – Red City Review
“The Blood on My Hands is a powerful, dark memoir… This is a story that is going to remain in my mind for a long time.” – 4 Stars, Readers’ Favorite
“Once I picked this up I could not put it down, I needed to see how they got away from the monster who called himself their father, who called himself a husband.” – Sarah on Goodreads
“I thoroughly enjoyed this book despite the subject matter and hope it manages to help at least one child know that it gets better, life gets better.” – 5 Stars, Sarah Purdy
About the Author:
Shannon O’Leary is a prolific writer and performer. She is the author of several books of poetry and children’s stories, and she has won many awards for song-writing.
Shannon has acted and directed on the stage and on Australian national TV, and she runs her own production company.
She has numerous graduate and post-graduate degrees in education, music, and science. She is a teacher and academic, has five children with her deceased former husband, and lives with her longtime partner in Sydney, Australia.
INTERVIEW WITH THE AUTHOR
What initially got you interested in writing?
I have always written things down, poetry, letters, songs, stories. I think my fascination with reading inspired me to write from a very early age.
What genres do you write in?
I write novels, biographies, songs, plays, film scripts and poetry.
What drew you to writing these specific genres?
I love to hear peoples stories. It constantly amazes me how everyone has something to share, how every life is filled with so many wonderful stories and anecdotes. My love of the creative arts inspires me to write in many different genres and for different purposes.
What do you want readers to take away from reading your works?
I would like that all people who suffer from any kind of abuse including domestic violence to feel empowered. I want them to get away from the perpetrator and start again. I want others to know that you can always start again and even if things look their worst, life can be beautiful, fulfilling and rewarding.
What do you find most rewarding about writing?
When I write, my thoughts tumble out, in fact they cascade onto the page. I don’t analyse; the words just pour out of me. I feel all types of emotions when I write and it puts things into a black and white perspective. The most rewarding thing is that I have transferred my thoughts on to the page and I can keep writing. I find it a cleansing and wonderful experience although it can also be incredibly painful.
What do you find most challenging about writing?
The most challenging thing is airing your inner most thoughts to an unseen and sometimes very judgmental audience.
What advice would you give to people wanting to enter the field?
Write honestly and from your heart. Be true to your feelings and ideas. Listen to other peoples stories, they have so much to learn from and share.
What type of books do you enjoy reading?
I like reading everything from novels to research papers. I do not read or watch excessively violent stories or films despite my own book being filled with my own traumatic experiences.
Is there anything else besides writing you think people would find interesting about you?
I love to play all instruments. Some I play well others I just have a go on them and squeak my way through some musical interlude. It is great fun to explore different sounds. I also have a fascination for words, peoples’ stories and love my pets.
What are the best ways to connect with you, or find out more about your work?
You can read an excerpt from the book here: http://bookpublicityservices.com/the-blood-on-my-hands-by-shannon-oleary/
I am also on Facebook & Twitter:
The book is available for sale on Amazon: