The Lovely Bones Author’s Memoir Pulled From Shelves Following Wrongful Rape Conviction
The memoir from the author of The Lovely Bones has been taken off store shelves after a man was wrongfully convicted of raping her.
Anthony Broadwater Jr., 61, served 16 years in prison after being convicted of raping Alice Sebold, 58, in 1981. She was 18 at the time, studying at Syracuse University, in New York State.
Sebold went on to write about the assault and her subsequent trauma in Lucky, her 1999 memoir. It also details key developments in the trial, including how she came to recognise Broadwater, and the composite sketch not matching the accused. He was then convicted of first-degree rape and other charges, but has since been exonerated – he always maintained his innocence.
Simon and Schuster, which owns Sebold’s publisher, Scribner, confirmed the book would be pulled from the shelves following Broadwater’s conviction being overturned.
‘Following the recent exoneration of Anthony Broadwater, and in consultation with the author, Scribner, and Simon and Schuster will cease distribution of all formats of Alice Sebold’s 1999 memoir Lucky while Sebold and Scribner together consider how the work might be revised,’ a statement read, as per Fox News.
The company also shared Sebold’s earlier statement, in which she wrote, ‘First, I want to say that I am truly sorry to Anthony Broadwater and I deeply regret what you have been through.
‘I am sorry most of all for the fact that the life you could have led was unjustly robbed from you, and I know that no apology can change what happened to you and never will. Of the many things I wish for you, I hope most of all that you and your family will be granted the time and privacy to heal.’
‘I am grateful that Mr. Broadwater has finally been vindicated, but the fact remains that 40 years ago, he became another young Black man brutalized by our flawed legal system. I will forever be sorry for what was done to him.’
In an interview with The New York Times, Broadwater said he was ‘relieved and grateful’ for her apology. ‘It took a lot of courage, and I guess she’s brave and weathering through the storm like I am… to make that statement, it’s a strong thing for her to do, understanding that she was a victim and I was a victim too,’ he said.
If you have been affected by any of the issues in this article and wish to speak to someone in confidence, contact the Rape Crisis England and Wales helpline on 0808 802 9999 between 12pm–2.30pm and 7pm– 9.30pm every day. Alternatively, you can contact Victim Support free on 08 08 16 89 111 available 24/7, every day of the year, including Christmas