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Books That Help Me Become a Better Counselor
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​The Racial Healing Handbook 0 O. Ngadjui The Racial Healing Handbook Book Being Reviewed: Singh, A. A. (2019). The racial healing handbook: Practical activities to help you challenge privilege, confront systemic racism & engage in collective healing. New Harbinger Publications, Inc. Reviewer: Olivia Ngadjui Genre: Self-Help, Current Events, Popular Culture Subject Headings: Communication, Multicultural Issues, Racial & Ethnic Identity, Racial & Ethnic Politics, Social Justice  Review: The Racial Healing Handbook: Practical Activities to Help You Challenge Privilege, Confront Systemic Racism and Engage in Collective Healing by Dr. Anneliese A. Singh, LPC, stimulates internal and external growth in its vast array of readers. When considering its applicability, the need for social justice transcends time and space; social justice remains relevant everywhere. Though not specific to counseling, the handbook prompts counseling professionals to improve our work with clients through considering our own understanding of culture. It also provides advocacy tools that promote ethical multicultural counseling practices. After providing a relational illustration of racism and its impact, Singh normalizes its presence in everyday society. The ten chapters of the handbook include some of the following titles, prompting readers to “Catch Yourself in the Flow of Racism,” “Reclaim Your Whole Racial Self,” “Be A Racial Ally” and “Engage in Collective Racial Healing” (pp. 7-8). Counselor educators might utilize material found within the handbook across counseling courses to inspire critical consciousness and cultural humility. The impact of utilizing this handbook may heal tensions within counseling students’ cross-cultural relationships, while also solidifying therapeutic alliances in their sessions. All clients can serve to benefit from the handbook’s material, as it is necessary to dismantle systemic oppression for those who are impacted by and perpetuate racism. Counseling professionals can expect this handbook to prompt the need to lean into challenging areas of discomfort; but the journey found in the handbook is well worth the effort to uphold the tenets of the counseling profession.
by O. Ngadjui
Tuesday, July 7, 2020
The Beginning Counselor's Survival Guide 0 M. Vaughters The Beginning Counselor's Survival Guide: The New Counselor's Plan for Success from Practicum to Licensure Book Being Reviewed: Adams, S. A., & Doss, C. R. (2011). The beginning counselor's survival guide: The new counselor's plan for success from practicum to licensure. Middletown, DE: Beginnings. Reviewer: Madeleine Vaughters Genre: Self-Help Subject Headings: Career, College Review: For counselors-in-training, there are many questions and worries that arise when thinking about establishing a counseling career. Adams and Doss (2011) created a book that helps “map out” what the start of a counselor’s career may look like, ranging from locating an internship site to addressing common concerns pertaining to licensure. The authors provide first-hand knowledge for navigating the beginning stages as a new counselor, including how to create and maintain appropriate client relationships while also staying focused on counselor self-care.  Emerging professionals learn how to market themselves successfully to the public as well as gain pointers on finding a supervisor. Adams and Doss laid out the pros and cons to interning at various locations, and provide suggestions for narrowing down your site based upon theoretical approaches or specialty areas of interest. Reading through these tips of experience from seasoned counselors gives students the confidence they need to go out and find training experiences that are fit for them. This book is ideal for emerging counselors looking for a helping hand when tackling the unexpected aspects of the field. Adams and Doss have compiled an amazing wealth of knowledge that every new counselor can benefit from. In addition, this book can serve as a resource for counselor educators, as it serves as a refresher on what field experiences can be like. This collection of tips, tricks, and general information can help both educators and students alike gain a better idea of what to expect when entering the field of counseling.
by M. Vaughters
Friday, November 15, 2019
Listening to Sexual ​Minorities: A Study of Faith and Sexual Identity 0 J. Coleman Listening to Sexual Minorities: A Study of Faith and Sexual Identity on Christian College Campuses Book Being Reviewed: Yarhouse, M. A., Dean, J. B., Stratton, S. P., & Lastoria, M. (2018). Listening to sexual minorities: A study of faith and sexual identity on Christian college campuses. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press. Reviewer: Jamian Coleman Genre: Non-Fiction - Adult Subject Headings: College, LGBTQ+ Issues, Multicultural/Cross-cultural Issues, Sexuality, Spiritual journey Review: The intersectionality of sexual-identity and faith can be difficult terrain to navigate for sexual-minorities, especially students on conservative Christian college campuses. Listening to Sexual Minorities: A Study of Faith and Sexual Identity on Christian College Campuses offers perspectives from sexual-minority students’ lived experiences on Christian college campuses throughout the United States. Mark Yarhouse and team utilize data from three qualitative and quantitative research studies to provide insight into the experiences of faith, sexuality, attitudes and beliefs, and campus climate for sexual-minority students on conservative Christian college campuses. Throughout the book, readers are reminded of the unique stories, life experiences, and diverse levels of sexual attraction and faith of each sexual-minority student. Additionally, the authors provide the readers with insights into how sexual-minority students fit into their Christian college campuses, reminding them that these students should not be stereotyped based on preconceived assumptions.   For counselors, this book is relevant when working with individuals who identify as a sexual-minority and are applying for, attending, or have graduated from a conservative Christian college. This text illuminates the challenges these individuals may face on Christian college campuses, which may help counselors gain greater insight and awareness, as well as understand how to better provide beneficial resources to support sexual-minority students’ college or post-college experience. In addition, counselor educators may consider utilizing this book in relevant courses to introduce the intersectionality of sexual-identify and faith when attempting to offer perspectives that may be unfamiliar to students outside of this faith tradition.
by J. Coleman
Tuesday, October 29, 2019
A Scanner Darkly 0 V. McGaha A Scanner Darkly Book Being Reviewed: Dick, P. K. (1977) A scanner darkly. Garden City, NY: Doubleday and Company. Reviewer: Valerie McGaha Genre: Fiction - Adult Subject Headings: Family Dynamics. Relationships, Self-injurious Behavior, Substance Abuse-Alcohol, Substance Abuse-Drugs Review: Robert “Bob” Arctor is an undercover special agent who is addicted to Substance D. The book identifies his usage of Substance D with others along with marijuana usage. Bob and his drug-using peers consume Substance D daily with increased frequency. Bob and Donna are married; however, they experience marital decline and decreased physical intimacy. To thwart Bob’s marital woes, he engages in marital infidelity with Connie. Bob and Connie share a sexual relationship in addition to drug usage. Bob is dependent on Substance D for daily interactions and common existence and eventually experiences decreased brain deterioration and limited mental functioning. Although employed, Bob’s work satisfaction and productivity declines. Continued use of Substance D induces continued dependency and demotivation towards recovery. A Scanner Darkly when utilized as a reference text can empower counselors, clients, and family members regarding the effects of chemical dependency and addiction. The book highlights prior Substance D history for Bob, a life with no previous mental illness, hallucinations, delusions, nor suicidal behavior. Bob lives a normal and content life, healthy, married with two children. This book educates the destruction of substance abuse and addiction. Bob’s drug usage began and increased. He socialized with drug using peers. Counselors and clients can increase their understanding of the factors associated with Bob’s drug usage and its impact on his marital and parental decline and infidelity engagement. The book highlights the tragedies of drug dependency and addiction (e.g., death). Conversations can lead to recovery factors such as identified triggers, connection with healthy supportive structures, and acknowledged resilient qualities of individuals and families towards recovery.
by V. McGaha
Monday, April 29, 2019
Into the Wild 0 M. Nice Into the Wild Book Being Reviewed: Krakauer, J. (1997). Into the wild. New York, NY: Anchor Books. Reviewer: Matthew Nice Genre: Non-Fiction - Adult, Memoir/Biography Subject Headings: Family Dynamics, Spiritual Journey, Trauma Review: Into the Wild is the biography of Christopher McCandless, a recent college graduate who decides to give up his affluent life to hitchhike across the United States to fulfill his dream of living in solitude in the wilderness of Alaska. Author Jon Krakauer guides readers into the psyche of McCandless through his journal entries, letters, and interviews with family. Through these personal accounts of McCandless, the reader is guided through his journey of hitchhiking across the United States, recounting people he met, odd jobs he took, and his 113 days of living alone inside of an abandoned bus in the Alaskan bush. The story also explores the abusive childhood trauma of McCandless and the effect it may have had on his journey for isolation. Freedom, identity, happiness, and self-reliance are guiding themes explored throughout the book, which assist in shaping the view of McCandless’ motivations and journey. The lessons he learns throughout the story come at a tragic cost and will keep readers thinking of their own interpretation long after the final pages are read. This tome can assist counselors in understanding the effect of childhood trauma. Professional counselors can use the journey of McCandless and his motivations for isolation and adventure to assist in understanding clients’ motivations. The trauma McCandless experiences can assist counselors in understanding some symptoms and outcomes of trauma. Counselors can use the book and story of McCandless as an opportunity to become further educated on trauma. Counselor educators can use the book as a case study in trauma and counseling techniques classes. Students will be able to discuss the effects of trauma within the book and how they might work with McCandless as a client.
by M. Nice
Monday, September 10, 2018
Counseling Strategies for Loss and Grief 0 J. Blueford Counseling Strategies for Loss and Grief Book Being Reviewed: Humphrey, K. M. (2009). Counseling strategies for loss and grief. Alexandria, VA: American Counseling Association. Reviewer: Jillian Blueford Genre: Non-Fiction - Adult Subject Headings: Grief & Loss Review: Working with grieving clients can bring unique challenges to the counseling process. The Counseling Strategies for Loss and Grief book provides a comprehensive look inside an often unpredictable and challenging journey. Dr. Keren Humphrey offers counselors a unique perspective on grief and loss, including the historical understanding of grief and loss, relevant models, and appropriate strategies to fit various counseling styles and approaches. This book addresses several types of losses that highlight grief as an experience unrestricted by a timeline or having one correct way to grieve. Instead, Dr. Humphrey covers an integrated approach that helps counselors understand the characteristics of grief and how best to work with grieving clients. Further, she recognizes that counselors are not immune to loss and grief and offers strategies for stronger self-awareness and accountability for counselors to process their own grief. Readers can utilize this book as a tool to productively work with clients to manage their grief in healthy ways. Whether counselors have extensive knowledge and experience in grief and loss or are curious about how to best connect with a grieving client, counselors can refer to this book when they are looking for best practices. This book provides in-depth but flexible guidelines that any counselor can adopt to fit their client’s developmental level, along with cultural considerations that may influence the grieving process. Dr. Humphrey provides examples of several interventions that are clear and practical for counselors with different specialties and backgrounds. In addition to finding strategies that are adaptable to the client, Dr. Humphrey covers several counseling approaches, such as Cognitive-Behavioral and Solution-Focused Therapy that can help counselors view grief through a theoretically based lens. This sets this book apart from other grief and loss materials and make it relatable to counselors. Because grief is a universal experience, it is essential for counselors to enhance their understanding of grief and loss. This book fulfills that necessity while enriching readers with a holistic overview, theoretical models, and intentional strategies to assist all clients grieving many types of losses.
by J. Blueford
Thursday, August 16, 2018
The Center Cannot Hold: My Journey Through Madness 0 M. Mize The Center Cannot Hold: My Journey Through Madness Book Being Reviewed: Saks, E. R. (2007). The center cannot hold: My journey through madness. New York, NY: Hyperion Books. Reviewer: Mary Chase Mize Genre: Non-Fiction - Adult, Memoir/Biography Subject Headings: Heath/Wellness, Social Justice, Trauma  Review: Elyn Saks is a graduate of Yale Law School, a Marshall Scholar, and graduate of Oxford University. Dr. Saks is a recipient of the MacArthur Fellowship and holds a Ph.D. in psychoanalytic science. She is Associate Dean and Orrin B. Evans Professor of Law, Psychology, and Psychiatry at the University of Southern California, and is a prolific academic and educator. Dr. Saks also lives with schizophrenia. In her gripping memoir, Dr. Saks described the progress of navigating her early symptoms of schizophrenia as a child, leading up to her first psychotic break during her studies at Oxford University. Later, as a student at Yale, Dr. Saks was force-fed antipsychotic medications and left in restraints for hours at a time. By the time her diagnosis was confirmed, doctors declared her prognosis as "grave." In her story, Dr. Saks wrote with intimacy and vulnerability as she shared details of her hallucinations and delusions, her passion and perseverance for her work, and how she has found love and friendship while living with schizophrenia. Saks' memoir is profoundly insightful for counselors who may work in a hospital setting or with any client living with schizophrenia. Dr. Saks described how talk therapy helped her to live a healthy life and continues to help her struggles with not only the symptoms of her illness but also the stigma of taking medication. It is worth noting the amount of financial resources she has had in her life to help her with this journey and to be mindful of how privilege impacted the prognosis of living with schizophrenia. Overall, Dr. Saks' story is a testimony to the healing power of talk therapy, and how – combined with the right medication – it saved her life.
by M. Mize
Monday, August 13, 2018
In Harm’s Way 0 Christine Hayes In Harm’s Way Book Being Reviewed: Stanton, D. (2001). In harm’s way. New York, NY: Henry Holt and Company. Reviewer: Christine Hayes Genre: Non-Fiction - Adult Subject Headings: Grief & Loss, Military, PTSD, Trauma, War  Review: In Harm’s Way is the story of the sinking of the USS Indianapolis in the Pacific Ocean during World War II. The author of the book details life on the submarine, WWII, and the multiple identities one simultaneously holds while serving in the military (e.g., parent, spouse, sibling, friend). The most compelling aspect of the book is the description of the submarine sinking; from the initial torpedo strike, to the inspiring and tragic fight for survival in the shark-infested waters, the book highlights the various ways humans respond to tragedy and crisis. For those that survived and were rescued, this experience remained with them for a lifetime. For some, the unbelievable ordeal served as an inspiration for a new lease on life, whereas others were haunted for years by what they witnessed. This book assists counselors in their professional development because counselors might be working with those currently serving in the military, including those who have returned from war and areas of conflict. It is the responsibility of counselors to educate themselves’ about military life, including the challenges associated with such commitments. However, counselors must ensure that generalizations are not made about experiences; each client’s military service is unique and personal to that individual. Counselors can take their clients’ lead in the pace in which they share their stories, listen empathically, develop rapport, advocate for their client and provide therapeutic support. Counselors may not know the lived experience of military life, but they can cultivate a safe space for those with military service to express their feelings and reflect upon their experiences. By facilitating opportunities for self-exploration and healing, counselors can positively impact those who survive tremendously challenging situations, like those that survived the sinking of the USS Indianapolis.
by Christine Hayes
Thursday, July 12, 2018
Into Thin Air 0 Christine Hayes Into Thin Air Book Being Reviewed: Krakauer, J. (1997). Into thin air. New York, NY: Anchor Books. Reviewer: Christine Hayes Genre: Non-Fiction - Adult, Memoir/Biography Subject Headings: Grief & Loss, Sports/Athletics, Trauma Review: Into Thin Air is Jon Krakauer’s personal narrative of his 1996 climb of Mt. Everest, the tallest mountain in the world. An accomplished and lifelong mountaineer, Krakauer’s ultimate dream was to successfully climb Everest. When the sponsorship opportunity was presented to him, with the requirement to detail his journey (as Krakauer is also a well-known journalist), he enthusiastically agreed. Krakauer’s personal account describes the history and culture of Nepal. He also provides vivid detail of the sights, sounds, and feelings of the profound expedition. Krakauer and the other climbers experience extreme physical challenges due to the weather and high altitudes, as well as emotional challenges, due to the difficulty of the climb. He also highlights the errors and misunderstandings made by both the clients and guides attempting the climb, which resulted in tremendous tragedy. This book can be used by counselors in order to gain perspective on extreme sports and pursuits. For those who do not possess such passions, it can be difficult to understand the desire to continue engaging in such activities when so many risks are present. As counselors, it is imperative that we remain open-minded to those who set such goals, and promote a judgment-free environment that both assist clients in exploring their motivations for such endeavors and objectively assessing the associated risks. And when disaster strikes, like it did in Krakauer’s Everest journey, counselors can provide a supportive environment that assists clients in understanding and processing their grief.
by Christine Hayes
Monday, June 25, 2018
Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness 0 Christine Hayes Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness Book Being Reviewed: Cahalan, S. (2012). Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness. New York, NY: Simon & Schuster Paperbacks. Reviewer: Christine Hayes Genre: Memoir/Biography Subject Headings: Female Lifespan Development, Family Dynamics, Health/Wellness, Relationships, Trauma, Career Review: Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness is the memoir of Susannah Cahalan, a twentysomething who appears to have it all--a prestigious reporter job, a new boyfriend, and an exciting life in New York City. However, her life turned upside down when she started experiencing unexplainable and frightening symptoms such as paranoia, seizures, and hallucinations. During this time Susannah and her family sought answers, but with each negative test result doctors became confused and unable to provide a definitive diagnosis. They eventually found a doctor who was determined to find an answer. He diagnosed her with the rare, and still quite misunderstood autoimmune disease, anti-NMDA-receptor autoimmune encephalitis. With a diagnosis, both Susannah and her family felt a sense of hope, although her journey in battling the disease became filled with painful physical treatments and heart-wrenching emotional moments. Through persistence and her unwavering supportive environment, Susannah persisted through to recovery and is now an awareness advocate for the disease. This book can assist counselors, as it highlights the need for those in the helping professions to express empathic understanding, not only to students and clients but to those who are also a part of the support environment, such as family and friends. As evidenced by Susannah’s experience, it was the physician who committed endless time and energy into solving her medical mystery, who was eventually able to provide the road to recovery. As counselors, we can facilitate such a road--one that provides hope and support for the future.
by Christine Hayes
Monday, June 25, 2018
The Heart of Whiteness: Confronting Race, Racism, and White Privilege 0 J. Castillo The Heart of Whiteness: Confronting Race, Racism, and White Privilege Book Being Reviewed: Jensen, R. (2005). The heart of whiteness: confronting race, racism, and white privilege. San Francisco, CA: City Lights. Reviewer: Jaime Castillo Genre: Other Subject Headings: Multicultural/Cross-Cultural Issues, Racial/Ethnic Identity, Racial/Ethnic Politics, Social Justice Review: The Heart of Whiteness, Confronting Race, Racism, and White Privilege provides a critical lens to race and color in America. Jensen describes America as a “White Supremacist” society, a nation whose ideology was founded on perpetual denigration and exploitation of non-white groups (i.e. indigenous people, Africans, and non-white immigrants). Jensen deconstructs established myths of racism and white privilege, and highlights the hesitancy and fears of members of White society in acknowledging the presence of systemic and institutional racism in everyday American life. Jensen moves from engaging in a critical analysis of white supremacy in America, to the emotional relationship white individuals have in rationalizing it. Anger, guilt, and fear are a few of the emotions Jensen highlights that are experienced by white individuals that ultimately justify white supremacy over non-white groups. Throughout the text, Jenson models vulnerability and how to continue to strive for interpersonal development and cultural awareness. Skills that make this text a must read for counselors, supervisors, and counselor educators as they continue to develop as culturally competent practitioners and advocates for social justice. This book can be used by counselors educators to critically reflect on their own narratives and experiences pertaining to white privilege. Similarly, counselor educators can integrate this text into courses (multicultural, theories, counseling skills, practicum) to encourage emerging counselors to do the same. Practicing counselors and supervisors can use this book to continue their development and practice as social justice advocates for the clients and communities they serve.
by J. Castillo
Thursday, January 4, 2018
​On Being a Therapist 0 A. Catena On Being a Therapist Book Being Reviewed: Kottler, J. (2010). On being a therapist (4th ed.). San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass. Reviewer: Angela Catena Genre: Self-help, Other Subject Headings: Health/wellness, Relationships Review: This book is a helpful tool and reminder to clinicians of every skill and experience level. Jeffrey Kottler (2010) explores the good, bad, and the ugly of being a mental health practitioner. He ties together personal motives for becoming a therapist with the political, cultural, and social contexts for the relationships we cultivate and uphold. The author provides an honest account of challenges therapists may encounter, including experiencing disappointment, failures, and navigating our own imperfections. On Being a Therapist digs deep into the author’s experiences and provides both validation and universality amongst mental health professionals alike. In addition to the plethora of experiences one may encounter, Kottler (2010) provides approaches to mitigating the negative side effects of being a helper in an effort to maximize its rewards. The author’s passion and respect for the profession is felt throughout the pages of his book. This book is ideal for new and seasoned clinicians as well as those looking to reinvigorate their passion and career as mental health professionals. While the author provides an intimate and transparent account of his personal and professional experiences, some may not meet his cynicism with open and welcoming arms. This book includes the "dirty little secrets" of being a therapist, such as the stress of being a helper, working with clients that test our patience, and the mental and emotional tolls that can lead to burnout. These rather honest experiences may foster hesitation amongst new clinicians or be viewed as a breath of fresh air.
by A. Catena
Thursday, March 2, 2017
Mothers Who Kill Their Children: Understanding the Acts of Moms... 0 K. Webster Mothers Who Kill Their Children: Understanding the Acts of Moms from Susan Smith to the "Prom Mom" Book Being Reviewed: Meyer, C.L., & Oberman, M. (2001). Mothers who kill their children: Understanding the acts of moms from Susan Smith to the “Prom Mom”. New York, NY: New York University Press. Reviewer: Kevin Webster Genre: Non-Fiction - Adult Subject Headings: Crime, Female lifespan development, Family dynamics, Poverty-urban, Poverty-rural, Social justice, Violence-domestic Review: In the eyes of the public and the media, a mother is often cast as murderer, abuser, or psychopath when she kills her child. Meyer and Oberman (2001) challenge the descriptions given to mothers who kill. Criminal assumptions prevent clinicians, judges, jurors, and the community at large from understanding the true developmental nature of the problem. The authors describe shared intrapersonal, interpersonal, and societal obstacles facing mothers and pregnant women today. The book clarifies how clinicians and helpers can understand the psychological and societal conditions of motherhood that contribute to this social problem. The authors found mothers overburdened by poverty, adolescent motherhood, domestic violence, sexual assault, poor education, childhood sexual abuse, mental illness, and isolation. Infanticide and filicide is set against cultural and societal expectations that motherhood can only be a joyous and welcomed transition. Prevailing assumptions lead to decreased social support during a time of increasing stress. This book is important for counselors because the authors present a population of mothers that have slipped through the cracks of mental health outreach. The book begs the reader to strive for an empathic, nonjudgmental perspective of an issue that, at first glance, seems steeped in immorality and punishment. By providing a typology of women who commit this crime, counselors can recognize the significant risk factors that contribute to this unique dilemma. If we as mental health and other wellness professionals can identify, mitigate, and help solve the psychosocial stressors that make infanticide and filicide an option for some mothers, we can also be part of the solution.
by K. Webster
Friday, January 27, 2017
The Checklist Manifesto: How To Get Things Right 0 T. Murphy The Checklist Manifesto: How To Get Things RightBook Being Reviewed: Gawande, A. (2009). The checklist manifesto: How to get things right. New York: MetropolitanReviewer:Thomas MurphyGenre: Non-Fiction - AdultSubject Headings: CollegeReview: How does one battle the ever increasing complexity encountered in the mental health field? The answer may rest in Atul Gawande's The Checklist Manifesto. Gawande (Being Mortal, Complications), a thoracic surgeon and longtime writer for The New Yorker, illuminates the power of the mundane checklist and demonstrates how complex tasks like surgery, architecture and flying airplanes are made safer and more efficient through their use. Clinical mental health counseling students and clinicians can benefit from learning how to apply checklists to the increasingly complex systems encountered in community agencies, hospitals and even private practice. How many of us has forgotten an important element in an Informed Consent or left out necessary information from a Behavioral Health Assessment? A checklist may be a simple, but powerful answer to that conundrum. Gawande's great strength as a writer is his ability to dive into myriad disciplines and cogently describe elegant solutions to complex issues. His chapter on hospital infections details how the implementation of a checklist virtually eliminated one type of infection common to intensive care patients. Counseling interns and clinicians may find solutions to some of the difficulties they encounter as they develop professional skills.
by T. Murphy
Thursday, April 21, 2016
Blackout: Remembering the Things I Drank to Forget 0 C. Adams Blackout: Remembering the Things I Drank to ForgetBook Being Reviewed: Hepola, S. (2015). Blackout: Remembering the things I drank to forget [Kindle version]. Retrieved from Amazon.comReviewer:Charmayne AdamsGenre: Memoir/BiographySubject Headings: Career, Female lifespan development, Relationships, Substance abuse-alcohol Review: Blackout: Remembering the Things I Drank to Forget is a memoir depicting the life of a women struggling with alcohol addiction. The author shares her experience of nights she doesn’t remember, career pressure that seems to encourage alcohol as a muse for writing, relationships slowly crumbling, and a decline into a world that becomes hard for her to recognize. She talks about the struggles of attempting to quit multiple times and the hidden world of women who abuse alcohol. The book is fairly short and the content was not different to read, the writing style was easy to understand and follow. This text can assist counselors in many ways, especially as the world of women with alcohol abuse disorders comes to the forefront of addiction counseling. Hepola depicts a world full of hurt, damaged self-esteem, and shame that could be used to help counselors empathize with clients caught in the grips of addiction. The second half of the books chronicles the author’s journey through recovery. This book was easy to read and could be used as a recommended read for clients or a resource for counselors.
by C. Adams
Thursday, April 21, 2016
Broken: My Story of Addiction and Redemption 1 N. Golubovic Broken: My Story of Addiction and Redemption is a brilliant and necessary inside look into the struggles of the battle waged to win the fight for recovery and overcome the losses and shame that so often keep the addict in the throes of desperation. This will give counselors an insider understanding that there is more at play then just using. We have to fight to feel worthy of walking away from what substances help us hide. One of the hardest mountains to climb is forgiving ourselves. Interventions need to target these self esteem issues or the addict is destined to spiral in and out of recovery.
by S. Simms
Sunday, June 3, 2018
Sickened: The Memoir of a Munchausen by Proxy Childhood 0 J. Carter Sickened: The Memoir of a Munchausen by Proxy ChildhoodBook Being Reviewed: Gregory, J. (2003). Sickened: The memoir of a Munchausen by Proxy childhood. New York, NY: Bantam Dell. Reviewer:Jessica CarterGenre: Memoir/BiographySubject Headings: Trauma, Violence-Domestic Review: This book provides a first-hand account of Munchausen’s by Proxy (currently referred to as Factitious Disorder Imposed on Another in DSM-5) from the viewpoint of a child victim. As I read Julie Gregory's account of her life I felt my facial features contorted by the emotions flowing from the pages...disgust, shock, fear. Some sections were confusing and I became frustrated until I realized this was the exact intent of the author; the writing style mirrors the experience of a manipulated, abused, and uncertain child. Even more remarkable than what she survived is the account of Julie's transformation into an independent adult. She faces her experiences and goes beyond them, using her growth, healing, and personal understanding as a tool for not only self-restoration but the salvation of other children experiencing the same nightmare. Julie’s story is an enlightening example of resilience.Factitious Disorder Imposed on Another is a rare disorder. As such, most professionals will never see a case of either perpetrator or victim. This book may be useful as a case study, a way to gain insight into this specific form of abuse and an otherwise unknown population of victims. It should be noted, this memoir represents only one account and comorbid factors (i.e. paternal physical abuse, substance use) were also present.
by J. Carter
Friday, August 7, 2015
Amazing Grace: The Lives of Children and the Conscience of a Nation 0 T. Stoner-Harris Amazing Grace: The Lives of Children and the Conscience of a NationBook Being Reviewed: Kozol, J. (1995). Amazing grace: The lives of children and the conscience of a nation. New York: Crown. Reviewer:Tiffany Stoner-HarrisGenre: Non-Fiction - AdultSubject Headings: Multicultural/Cross-Cultural Issues, Poverty-Urban, Social Justice Review: Amazing Grace: The Lives of Children and the Conscience of a Nation examines the plight of inner city youth and their families, as the author observed and documented encounters with several individuals from the South Bronx, New York. The author examined some of the social ills that people from the community are routinely faced with, what allows them to be resilient in their current circumstances, and ultimately the nuances that distinguish this particular community from other communities. The author was able to establish relationships with specific children, individuals, and families within the community, and follow them through their journey of survival over a period of years. The author attempted to rationalize and comprehend some of the daily interactions, events and circumstances that occurred. By the end of the book it appeared that the author’s focus shifted, and through his immersion in the community he seemingly began to see the people and their experiences in a more genuine and personal light.This book would be useful for the practicing counselor seeking self-knowledge, and the counselor educator preparing counseling students to increase their awareness and knowledge of counseling diverse groups (social economic status, minority groups, faith based, incarcerated populations, etc.). This book would allow for a glimpse inside some of the experiences and lifestyles of inner city children, individuals or families living in poverty and facing obstacles unlike others outside of their community. This book would be useful in understanding challenges faced in an urban community, as well as some of the strengths that promote hope and resiliency in seemingly desolate situations.
by T. Stoner-Harris
Friday, August 7, 2015
Love's Executioner and Other Tales of Psychotherapy 0 R. DuFresne Love's Executioner and Other Tales of PsychotherapyBook Being Reviewed: Yalom, I. D. (1990). Love's Executioner and Other Tales of Psychotherapy. New York, NY: Perennial Classics.Reviewer:Robin DuFresneGenre: Non-Fiction - AdultSubject Headings: RelationshipsReview: Dr. Irvin Yalom, a renowned psychiatrist and psychotherapist, shares stories from his practice in Love’s Executioner and Other Tales of Psychotherapy. This 286 page book is divided into ten chapters. In each chapter Dr. Yalom’s describes his experience with a client, or clients, who triggers a bias within him that stunts the development of a therapeutic relationship. He discusses his process to reflect and attempt to overcome the bias; he has varied success in each case. Dr. Yalom’s writing style brings life to each client. The chapters are individual stories which can be read separately without detracting from the meaning.Love’s Executioner and Other Tales of Psychotherapy serves as a resource for counselors who are struggling to connect with a client. For beginning counselors, Dr. Yalom’s experience normalizes their first encounter with a client who challenges their abilities. Counselors with significant experience will enjoy the descriptions and reflect on their experiences with challenging clients. I read this book a chapter at a time during my first months as a practicing counselor; I am rereading this book as I teach reflection and basic helping skills to undergraduates. In both circumstances the book has reminded me to be reflective in all of my interactions with people.
by R. DuFresne
Friday, August 7, 2015
Client Issues in Counselling and Psychotherapy 0 K. Purswell Client Issues in Counselling and PsychotherapyBook Being Reviewed: Tolan, J., & Wilkins, P. (Eds.). (2012). Client issues in counselling and psychotherapy. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. Reviewer:Katie Purswell Genre: Non-Fiction - AdultSubject Headings: Anxiety Disorders, Depression, Eating Disorders, Grief & Loss, Personality Disorders, PTSD, Self-injurious Behavior, Sexual Abuse, TraumaReview: This slim volume contains a wealth of information about conceptualizing and working with a broad spectrum of clients. Tolan and Wilkins (2012) and the other contributing authors provide a person-centered understanding of issues such as loss, trauma and PTSD, childhood sexual abuse, depression, anxiety, multiple personalities, disordered eating, and self-harm. The authors focus on the origin of each of these issues as well as discussing the underlying meaning the issue has for the client. This in-depth discussion can remind both beginning and experienced counselors of the person with a unique story that lies behind the disorder or issue in focus. Each chapter is succinct, but filled with helpful information and thought-provoking discussions that can help both counselors and supervisors conceptualize clients through a relational lens. In addition to helping counselors understand their clients better, the authors provide case examples and vignettes of actual client situations to illustrate how a counselor might work with a client who struggles with one of the issues above. These real-life examples lend a useful element of practicality to the material. This book is not just for person-centered counselors, but for anyone who wants a new perspective on viewing clients beyond DSM-V diagnostic criteria.
by K. Purswell
Friday, August 7, 2015

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