Thursday, April 3, 2008

In The Realm of Hungry Ghosts


Close Encounters with Addiction, by Gabor Maté.
Quickie Recap: Maté is a psychologist working with vulnerable populations in downtown Vancouver. He works from a "take them as they are" perspective, but his book goes one better and tries to understand the addict, and the addictive process.
Quickie review: A friend sent me a link to an article that appeared in The Globe and Mail recently, written by Maté. I enjoyed the article. I enjoyed the book less so. Maté's strength is his ability to sketch the characters, to give a human touch, a name, and even a face to this disease. His downfall, however, is his incredible ability to mimic a textbook. Unfortunately, the brightness lent by the personalities that inhabit the book just weren't enough to sustain me during the long and dry chapters in between. I really had high hopes for this book, and I'm sorry to say (shocked to say, really) that the reading dragged on and on. I was avoiding it! I NEVER do that. I was disappointed.
Quickie recommendation: Pass.

3 comments:

Candace said...

If I'm not mistaken, you have a background in this stuff yourself. Are there any books on the subject that you would recommend?

Sweetest said...

You do the coolest book reviews. You don't bullshit.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the review. This is an optional read for one of my lectures so I might have to speed read through some of the dry bit. I'm hoping the juicy bits will be just that.

Any chapters in particular that you recommend?