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“Extraordinarily powerful.” Kim Hill
In 2006 J J Joseph was convicted of a violent assault on his wife. His subsequent detention meant there was a very real possibility that he might never be reunited with her and might not see his children again. Full of remorse, Joseph accepted his punishment, worked through the counselling and anger management courses he was required to complete, and fought to see his family again. During this period he took a good hard look at his life: at his violent upbringing dominated by a father whose fists were his first resort, at his hostile relationship with his mother (also a victim of violence), at the heartbreaking suicide of his younger brother, at his father's shocking murder, at his drug abuse and womanising.
He was forced to see what other people saw: a frightening and violent man whose actions were unpredictable. It was then that he understood, for the first time, what his wife had to put up with and why she was sometimes reticent and withdrawn. Finally it was his love for her and his devotion to his children that pulled him through. Drug- and alcohol-free for over a year now, and determined to change his life, Joseph has now been accepted back into the heart of his family. In Fighting for my Life, Joseph talks openly about his family background and life experiences, and is unusually honest in describing his feelings. This book played a major part in bringing his wife and his mother back to him again, when they read and grasped the truth about Joseph.
“Joe hasn't touched alcohol or other drugs in two years, says the book’s cover, and that’s an achievement to be proud of, just as this book is. A great story of hope for all those touched by domestic violence.” Wanganui Chronicle
“Fighting For My Life is the story of one man’s long and difficult journey to reach the place in which he now stands, a place from which he can see the impact of his past behaviour, understand some of the reasons for it and challenge himself to move forward.
Written with brutal honestly, Fighting For My Life takes the reader on a real journey through the world and mind of a violent offender.” Bay Weekend
“A disturbing yet inspirational memoir.” Tu Mai Magazine
“Understanding, but never excusing, the terrible, violent upbringing that led to a 2006 assault on his wife, it’s a raw, vivid apology.” Rise Magazine, MSD
“Written with brutal honesty.” Bay Weekender Whakatane review
J J Joseph is married with four children. He is Maori, in his thirties, and until recently worked in a meat-processing factory.