Cressida Pride was born in Durban, South Africa. She left in 2000 to escape from an abusive and violent ex-boyfriend. Welcome to the 21st century! The threat is still real and Cressida (an alias, of course), is currently hiding in London, having spent recent years in squalid room-shares.

Consistently living in fear, Miss Pride’s experiences make for compelling reading. The reader is often left thinking: “There but for the grace of God…”

Cressida made dreadful choices in life and love, but surely no woman who hasn’t lived can write such stories?


In 1998, after being a victim of an assault, I met the most feared drug lord of South Africa. In my story, GOODBYE DANNY, he is named Danny van der Linder, and he was the perfect charmer. Well, at least in public.

Keeping my assault a secret, I felt powerless and desired to escape everything, including myself, and so I left home to live with the real Danny. I believed the excitement that accompanied a notorious outlaw would provide the necessary liberation.

I chose to write this tale, my first autobiographical novel, for young adults who may be experiencing something similar or know of someone and also for those parents who may suspect that their child is in an abusive relationship.

During its creation, I was faced with many questions. Danny was murdered, but would I have been murdered too if I was with him at the nightclub on the fateful morning? And if he had lived, would I have survived his possessiveness and objectification? Would I have had the courage to leave him, as I had been planning days before his death?

My novel became a plea to all young adults: speak up; find someone to confide in; seek help and allow the law to protect you. And if you are struggling, please talk to someone you trust, even if it’s a teacher at school.

Cressida Pride

A Survivor