Waiting to Be Heard: A Memoir

Waiting to Be Heard: A Memoir - Amanda Knox Amanda Knox made worldwide headlines for more than four years. As the American college student accused of killing her roommate Meredith Kercher in Perugia, Italy she was both vilified and supported. Along with the newspapers and tabloids the line was drawn with two factions quickly forming; those believing she was guilty and those unequivocally convinced of her innocence. Her case spawned media frenzy, online blogs, endless news articles, books and even a made-for-television movie. Despite mounting evidence that she, and then boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito, had nothing to do with the murder they were convicted and sentenced to 25 and 24 years respectively to Italian prison. After an appeal and a new trial the verdict was overturned, both Amanda and Raffaele were acquitted and Amanda (very quickly) returned to the United States. This is Amanda’s story in her own words.

I listened to this book on audio (read by Amanda herself) and admittedly, I was not expecting a lot when I plugged in the first disc. I was very quickly, very pleasantly surprised. First of all, whether it is her talent, excellent editors or a combination of the two, it is a well-composed book. Amanda tells her story honestly, even the not so flattering parts. She admits to being young and naïve, trying to prove that she is an independent woman … and admits to going about that in a rather foolhardy way. Amanda does not sugar coat her lifestyle, nor does she make excuses for herself. A few times she meanders onto the “in hindsight” path and admits she did not make the best choices, but is there anyone who does not say that exact same thing about some aspect of their life? She writes HER STORY. She does not speculate on what was going on all around her, things she was not privy to from her jail cell. She does not lash out at the Italian officials. She tells the reader about the discomforts of being in an Italian prison, but shares the good things too. This IS her story and she tells is well.

I cannot help but draw comparisons to the book released several months ago by Raffaele. They each tell their story, from two different perspectives. Neither wavers in the facts of the case. Neither blames the other for their circumstances. That indicates, despite their age, the strength of character each possesses which allowed them to get through their ordeal. In my humble opinion, Amanda did a better job of telling her story.

Since I listened to the audio version I feel a need to comment on that as well. Although, always to my surprise, some authors do not do their books justice when they read them, this is definitely not the case with Amanda Knox. I do not think anyone else could have read her words any better. When she speaks about her family her voice holds tenderness and when she reads the more difficult parts you can hear that in the timbre of her voice. In the beginning you get the voice of the young schoolgirl she was as she embarked on her adventure and towards the end you hear the woman she has become.

If you were even the slightest bit captivated by the murder and trial while it was going on, whether you believed her innocent or guilty, this book is a must read.