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Wednesday Book Review: “A Visit From the Goon Squad,” “Mad in America: Bad Science, Bad Medicine, and the Enduring Mistreatment of the Mentally Ill” and… “Anatomy of an Epidemic: Magic Bullets, Psychiatric Drugs, and the Astonishing Rise of Mental Illness in America”

May 25th, 2011

I wanted to like Jennifer Egan’s “A Visit From the Goon Squad.” I really did. But it had too many characters, too many switch-ups, too much name dropping (hip bands, hip clubs, hip people at hip restaurants) and… I just wasn’t into it. I realize that it won the Pulitzer. And the National Book Critics Circle Award. Just not for me. The End.

Robert Whitaker is a genius, and I appreciate the work he is doing to expose all of messed-up stuff that the mentally ill have to face and deal with in our country. It’s too painful for me to write about this topic, especially because today is my late father’s birthday. (I love you, Dad. So very much. Happy birthday.) But I really recommend that everyone read the information that Whitaker has painstakingly gathered. Such a wake-up call.



ps don’t forget… the door to hell is in your living room. (under the carpet.)


  1. LIB says

    I really liked “A Visit from the Goon Squad” in spite of the criticisms you levied. I have to admit, tho, that all of your criticisms are valid.

    Happy Birthday to your dad. Blessings to you. Hugs (( )).

    May 26th, 2011 | #

  2. edj says

    How did I miss your post about the MAX train and the stinky people at the time? Soo awesome! And true. We must have been moving or something…that’s usually when I miss posts (also before I had a feedreader, so now I never miss posts)

    May your memories of your dad today be sweet. Hug your kids. I’m going to hug mine, also growing up with no grandpa on my side. Donn’s dad, who survived not one but two forms of so-called terminal cancer 5 years ago, just managed to dodge the bullet a 3rd time. The man is a walking miracle, and, I guess, proof that eating a lot of perservatives in your food really does work. This life, it is a strange one, no?

    May 26th, 2011 | #

  3. Anne says

    Thanks for spreading the word about Whitaker’s books. He exposes the profit- driven partnership of psychiatric establishment and the pharmaceutical that has millions of people over-diagnosed, over-medicated, and damaged from psychotropic drugs.

    June 9th, 2011 | #

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