Winner of The Ockham New Zealand Book Awards 2019 Winner of the New Zealand Booklovers Prize for Fiction 2019 Winner of the NZ Heritage Book Awards 2018 'Kidman's prose is precise, detailed, lyric... The fluencies and hard-won command of a good writer bring out their own truth' Irish Times 'A beautiful writer' The Times The offender is not one of ours. It is unfortunate that we got this undesirable from his homeland.
Auckland, October 1955. If young Paddy Black sings to himself he can almost see himself back home in Belfast. Yet, less than two years after sailing across the globe in search of a better life, here he stands in a prison cell awaiting trial for murder. He pulled a knife at the jukebox that night, but should his actions lead him to the gallows? As his desperate mother waits on, Paddy must face a judge and jury unlikely to favour an outsider, as a wave of moral panic sweeps the island nation.
Fiona Kidman's powerful novel explores the controversial topic of the death penalty with characteristic empathy and a probing eye for injustice.