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Broken Lives

             Broken Lives by Estelle Blackburn is a relevant expository text that through research has lead to a solid argument; 19 year old John Button was wrongfully convicted of killing his 17 year old girlfriend in a hit-run.
             In her efforts to influence her readers of such views, Blackburn has entered into the world of a serial killer, presenting a credible, solid account of these events and their surrounding matters. In result the reader accepts the book as a genuine explanation of an increasingly explicable miscarriage of justice. The reader now feels obliged to adopt Blackburn's views.
             The notion of justice is Blackburn's principal value, and her attitudes express the unfairness of Buttons imprisonment. Together they underline the purpose of the book; to convince the public of buttons innocence and Cooke's guilt in the death of Rosemary Anderson, and hopefully have Button pardoned. Blackburn makes it clear that there were inconsistencies throughout the police investigation and a failure of justice in the High Court etc. The police are seen as incompetent.
             Being an expository, non-fiction text, credibility is essential if the reader is to share such attitudes with the author. This credibility is primarily established by a list of sources in the preface and acknowledgments sections of the book. For example the police files of Eric Edgar Cooke and John Button.
             Photographs of the involved and maps of the city of Perth are also included. A sense of credibility is created using times, dates, streets and names mentioned internally in the text, demonstrating the extent of Blackburn's investigations. The reader is now in a position to seriously consider all information presented.
             Example of such detail: "Cooke left home at 12:30 p.m., driving his 1956 FJ Holden to Adelaide terrace and parking outside Fairlanes.".
             Broken Lives is a book where a strong audience appeal is desired, and the book has succeeded in this area.

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