The father of the murdered British student Meredith Kercher has announced the release of his book narrating the moments following the death of his daughter. John Kercher, a British writer and journalist, announced the release of his book in muted fashion, in stark comparison to the media buzz surrounding American exchange student Amanda Knox’s memoirs, which are scheduled to be released later this year.
For quick background, Meredith Kercher was murdered in Perugia, Italy in November 2007 at the age of 21. A British university exchange student from south London, she was found dead on the floor of her bedroom with stab wounds to the throat. Amanda Knox, an American exchange student and flatmate of Kercher was convicted along with two others on charges of sexual assault and murder in December 2009, sentenced to 26 years in prison. Her conviction wasoverturned on appeal in October 2011 on the grounds that there was a "material non-existence" of evidence.
Ignoring the media fascination surrounding Knox, her arrest, and subsequent acquittal, we must not forget that at the end of the day the Kercher family is in grief. Kercher's new book underscores a point that has been overshadowed by Amanda Knox’s own story, and has us wondering once again what happened to his daughter.
John Kercher’s book (due to be released in May) recounts the experiences of the Kercher family following the death of Meredith. Reactions to the announcement of this book have been muted, when compared to the buzz surrounding the expected release of Amanda Knox’s memoirs. Many books have been written about Meredith’s death, but this is the first time that a member of her family will formally publish something.
Unlike the Knox family, the Kerchers kept a relatively low media profile throughout the ordeal. Because of this, a book recounting their story may seem like it would provide more information on the situation.
The book will offer a comparison to the Knox family, who have campaigned prolifically for their daughter’s release. The way the case was handled by the Italian legal system has been heavily criticized, ranging from DNA evidence right down to the manner in which the trial was conducted. A tangible account of what actually happened now seems impossible to obtain.
Since the acquittal of Knox, interest in the Kercher story has waned. Whilst Knox’s memoirs may reignite interest in the Kercher case, it would be for the wrong reasons; the interest will be focused almost entirely on Knox, and not on Kercher.
No doubt, Knox’s memoirs will receive attention when released. But no matter how much publicity Amanda Knox gets, we must not forget that there is a family grieving and no closer to finding out what happened to their daughter.