Pascale Bruinen (born on February 11, 1964) worked as a public prosecutor from 1998 until January 1st 2016. Before that she was an attorney for more than seven years, of which she spent the last years working in the field of personal injury claims. Her professional affinity leaned toward victim support, sexual offences, and domestic violence.
When Pascale discovered how much she loved to write, she started a blog in 2011: www.coolcolumns.com. For more than five years, she posted a new entry every Friday. From 2012 until 2016 she also wrote a weekly column about her work as a prosecutor for Algemeen Dagblad, the second largest national newspaper in the Netherlands. Next to that, she wrote various articles about her legal experiences with children, both as victims and as perpetrators, for Fabulous Mama Magazine.
In January 2015, her first book “Fortunately my First Corpse is Fresh” was published with true stories from the exciting world of criminal law (De Fontein Publishers). It is a highly personal account, written in an easily accessible style, about her work as a magistrate, her humanity, and motherhood. In endearing fashion, she describes her exciting, intense, poignant and sometimes humorous experiences as a female public prosecutor who is charged with providing leadership in the masculine world of the police force. Her relaxed writing style allows readers to identify with her struggles when she finds herself dealing with her own emotions, feelings and doubts in this challenging job, especially because she is the mother of two children and her partner is a policeman.This socially relevant book opens the door to a world that has traditionally been sealed tight, received considerable acclaim and is currently in its 4th edition.
The book has generated a great deal of media attention, both in the written press – including interviews in Grazia, Opzij.nl, Rechtspraak, Algemeen Dagblad, Dagblad De Limburger – as well as on radio and television, including a live interview with the top ranked talk show in the Netherlands (RTL Late Night) and a portrait in the television program “De Wandeling”.
Iconic magazine Harper’s Bazaar (Dutch edition) nominated her for “Woman of the Year 2015 Award” based on her extraordinary career.
Pascale is energetic, loves to travel (have a look at her other blog, www.cruisecraver.com) and speaks excellent English, French, German and Italian, as well as a decent amount of Spanish. She enjoys interior decorating at home, as well as reading, outdoor activities (especially spending time in nature) and motivating people. Pascale avoids fuzzy language and has a wonderful sense of humor, especially in the ability to laugh at herself. She has great understanding of human nature, and the capacity to empathize. Because she is a good listener and not afraid of placing herself in a vulnerable position, she easily connects with others.
An exceptional event after the death of her father encouraged her interest in personal growth and spirituality. In October 2016 this event also led to the publication of her second book, The Year of the Owl (Kosmos Publishers), a true story. It deals with an experience that threw her personal and professional life upside down and marked a paradigm shift in her thinking. Whereas first she would believe nothing until proven true, since that experience she believes everything until proven false.The book describes how Pascale left the mourning process as a different person, and that her father’s intensely sad death also quite unexpectedly led to beautiful things in her life. This personal development process was a major catalyst in her decision to leave the Public Prosecution Service and instead go where her heart would take her. Pascale’s second book is comforting, hopeful and shows how – against all odds – you can make your dreams come true. Since this remarkable experience, it has been Pascale’s mission to remove any sense of woolliness from the image that surrounds spirituality. More than anything, she hopes to inspire people to follow their own hearts.
Pascale lives with her partner and has a 23 year old son and 22 year old daughter, as well as a 21 year old ‘bonus-son’. You can reach her via her (Dutch and English) website, www.pascalebruinen.com.
Praise for ‘Year of the Owl’
I read this book in one go. Big tears of emotion and recognition. For me it confirmed that you can spend many years working and living in the though world of facts and evidence, but feelings and intuition will take you where you need to be in de end. Inspiring! I have seldom read such a beautiful, honest book full of vulnerability. Therefore I think that everyone deserves to read this wonderful book that has so much food for thought.
Jessica Villerius, film- and documentary maker
I was gripped by this touching story from the very first page. I am not ashamed to say that there were quite some passages that deeply moved me. A beautiful and lasting tribute from which we can all learn something!
Peter R. de Vries – Dutch tv-personality
Words cannot describe what I feel; you get caught up in the story because it is written in such a personal fashion. What an evocative, exquisite tribute to a lost one!
Marc Rieu – art painter
Praise for ‘Luckily my first Corpse is Fresh’
What a delight! Pascale Bruinen opens up completely in her book ‘Luckily my first corpse is fresh’, while she is putting all her insecurities on display. The book is not an advertising brochure for the Public Prosecution Department, but an honest collection of things that are done right and things that do not function quite as desired. All in all this is definitely worth reading, especially by outsiders. It shows the reader that public persecutors – if he had perhaps doubted as much – do have a heart.
Mr. Magazine – magazine for lawyers
Ordinary, horrific, funny and heartbreaking situations, both inside and outside the courtroom, are described one after the other in ‘Luckily my First Corpse is Fresh’.. This book is very easy to read, which is striking, because lawyers are not generally known for their use of accessible language.
Rechtspraak Magazine – issue 2015
Pascale Bruinen tells the reader everything there is to know about the profession of public prosecutor… She speaks about it with appealing candor. Everything is laced with a strong dose of humor. She does not spare herself. Because of her openness, she reduces the distance between herself and outsiders. Add to this her gift of describing situations graphically, and she reaches even closer to her audience. It is disarming to see how she moves among her readers. All in all, a very successful attempt to correct an altogether onesided view of the work and existence of the public prosecutor.
Dick van der Veen – Review Hebban.nl
In this book, which is almost impossible to put down, Pascale writes about her personal experiences… In a very pleasant manner and with great humor she enhances each chapter with a column that flawlessly segues from one to the other. Her writing style is feisty and straightforward, which I enjoy. Her approach is “no nonsense”, and she does not hide from her emotions, or from highlighting some of her own mistakes. I very much enjoyed reading it, and I tore through it easily – no stilted language, but rather easy reading. In other words, highly recommended!
Sprakeloos – Blog review