Slater subtitles her book, A Therapist's Memoir of Madness. Embedded in this definition are two elements: a psychotherapist's composite experiences with a small cadre of patients and the therapist's personal experience with a mental disorder. The author draws the reader into a fascinating series of anecdotes based on therapeutic encounters.

These stories are as much, if not more, about the therapist's deepest responses to her patients than about the patient him or herself. This particular approach adds an element of confession to the work that one does not often find in clinical studies. And, finally, Slater takes the reader backward in time to her own past as a woman with profound emotional pain.


This is a beautifully written work, replete with fresh and fascinating metaphors. It moves quickly and is compelling in its narrative simplicity combined with rich images. There are moments of personal exposure that give a discomforting voyeuristic quality to some of the clinical encounters, but it is this that also lends a sense of complete honesty to the stories.


Random House

Place Published

New York



Page Count