New Novel Ponders How Much Abuse is Too Much?

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Author Ralph Thornton’s riveting story of battered wife forced into violence against her husband.

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Was it self-defense, or was it murder? These are the driving questions behind the new courtroom drama Beyond Terror: A Battered Wife on Trial for the Alleged Murder of Her Husband (published by iUniverse) by Ralph Thornton. A retired lawyer with almost 40 years of experience, the author’s familiarity with the subject matter shines through on every page.

Attorney David Chartier was enjoying a pleasant weekend with his family in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan when he receives a panicked phone call from his client, Jean Davis. Jean was being held at the Michigan State Police Post under suspicion of murdering her husband, John. David can’t believe it, so he heads to the City of Pictured Rocks to hopefully try and save her from a life in prison, meeting Jean at the Michigan State Post and representing Jean in a sensational jury trial.

Jean claims that John abused her physically and psychologically throughout the last seven years of their marriage. If she stayed, she would end up dead at his hand; if she tried to run, he would find her and kill her for abandoning him. As she tearfully explains to David, her only option was to shoot him in self-defense. Now, he must find a way to make her argument stick in court.

Written by a retired trial lawyer, Beyond Terror offers a detailed, painful look at the psyche of an abused woman and the legal process that threatens to protect or condemn. David will do anything to save Jean’s life, but will a jury accept her testimony? He must dig deep to find the forensic evidence he needs and, in doing so, travel paths he never before considered.

“My target audience,” the author says, “are women and young ladies to help them understand the spousal abuse syndrome and ways to escape abusive relationships before they become life threatening.”

About the Author
Ralph Thornton received his bachelor’s degree from Michigan State University and a Juris Doctorate from the Detroit College of Law and the Michigan State University College of Law. Thornton also has a Ph.D. in system design engineering from Corllins (online) University. He served as a trial lawyer for nearly 40 years. Now retired, Thornton lives in the Hiawatha National Forest in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Beyond Terror is his first novel.

iUniverse, an Author Solutions, Inc. self-publishing imprint, is the leading book marketing, editorial services, and supported self-publishing provider. iUniverse has a strategic alliance with Chapters Indigo in Canada, and titles accepted into the iUniverse Rising Star program are featured in a special collection on iUniverse recognizes excellence in book publishing through the Star, Reader’s Choice and Editor’s Choice designations—self-publishing’s only such awards program. Headquartered in Bloomington, Indiana, iUniverse also operates offices in Indianapolis. For more information or to publish a book, please visit or call 1-800-AUTHORS. For the latest, follow @iuniverse on Twitter.


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