Book Reviews

February 15th, 2011

Lesbian and Gay Parents and Their Children: Research on the Family Life Cycle

By Paul Efthim PhD

Book examines children of sexual minority parents (February 2011 Issue) “Lesbian and Gay Parents and Their Children: Research on the Family Life Cycle” By Abbie E. Goldberg American Psychological Association Washington, D.C., 2010 By Paul Efthim, Ph.D. “The Kids Are All Right” is the name of a superb motion picture starring Annette Benning and Julianne Moore about a lesbian couple and their two teenaged children, but it could also serve nicely as the unofficial subtitle of this excellent book on the same subject. The implied question, of course, is: What is it like for children to grow up with gay [More]

February 1st, 2011

Common Dilemmas in Couple Therapy

By Paul Efthim PhD

Author guides readers through menu of techniques (February 2011 Issue) “Common Dilemmas in Couple Therapy” By Judith P. Leavitt Routledge New York, N.Y., 2010 By Paul Efthim, Ph.D. This intriguing text takes a different approach than most books on couple therapy. Rather than presenting a model of couple treatment linked to one particular theoretical viewpoint, this new book by Judith Leavitt offers a technically eclectic overview of strategies for working with specific issues in relationship therapy. Leavitt, a psychologist and certified sex therapist who maintains a private practice in Wayland, Mass., teaches couple therapy and human sexuality at the Massachusetts [More]

January 15th, 2011

Earning a Living Outside of Managed Mental Health Care: 50 Ways to Expand Your Practice

By James K Luiselli EdD ABPP BCBA-D

Unique resource is fun, worthwhile read (January 2011 Issue) “Earning a Living Outside of Managed Mental Health Care: 50 Ways to Expand Your Practice” By Steven Walfish American Psychological Association Washington, D.C., 2010 By James K. Luiselli, Ed.D., ABPP, BCBA-D Many books are available to mental health professionals (MHPs) that offer advice and direction for building and maintaining a private practice. I’ve read most of them. This book, edited by psychologist Steven Walfish has a single purpose: educating MHPs about surviving and prospering financially in the era of managed care. Walfish’s formula for the book is creative. He solicited contributions [More]

November 1st, 2010

“The Violent Person”

By James K Luiselli EdD ABPP BCBA-D

‘Invaluable’ resource looks at ethical dilemmas   “The Violent Person” By Raymond B. Flannery American Mental Health Foundation, Inc. Riverdale, N.Y., 2009   Reviewed by James K. Luiselli, Ed.D., ABPP, BCBA-D What constitutes a behavioral emergency? According to psychologist Raymond B. Flannery, it represents a “medical or psychiatric crisis,” which “poses the risk of imminent, violent behavior toward the responding healthcare professional, the agitated victim, innocent family members, or bystanders.” “The Violent Person” is intended as a risk management guide for practitioners who encounter or are likely to experience such events. The book’s target audience includes health care providers and [More]

October 1st, 2010

APA Ethics Code Commentary and Case Illustrations

By James K Luiselli EdD ABPP BCBA-D

‘Invaluable’ resource looks at ethical dilemmas “APA Ethics Code Commentary and Case Illustrations” By Linda Campbell, Melba Vasquez, Stephen Behnke and Robert Kinscherff American Psychological Association Washington, D.C., 2010 Reviewed By James K. Luiselli, Ed.D., ABPP, BCBA-D I suspect that, at some time, every psychologist has confronted or been made aware of an ethical dilemma. Ethics are principles that define standards of professional practice and inform enforceable codes of conduct. A commitment to behave ethically should be a lifelong pursuit. The premise for this book is that “ethics is better described as a process than as a set of rules.” [More]

August 21st, 2010

In her wake: A Child Psychiatrist Explores the Mystery of Her Mother’s Suicide

By Paul Efthim PhD

Compelling work chronicles author’s loss “In Her Wake: A Child Psychiatrist Explores the Mystery of Her Mother’s Suicide” By Nancy Rappaport Basic Books New York, N.Y., 2009 Reviewed By Paul Efthim, Ph.D. This book is a gift to anyone who has lost a family member, friend or patient to suicide. In 1963, when Nancy Rappaport was four, her mother killed herself in the midst of a bitter public custody dispute, leaving behind six children and countless questions. Four decades later, Rappaport, now a psychiatrist in Cambridge, felt driven to investigate this tragic loss and its impact on herself and her [More]

July 1st, 2010

Public Speaking for Psychologists

By James K Luiselli EdD ABPP BCBA-D

“Public Speaking for Psychologists: A Lighthearted Guide to Research Presentations, Job Talks, and Other Opportunities to Embarrass Yourself” By David B. Feldman and Paul J. Silvia American Psychological Association Washington, D.C., 2010  Authors offer ‘spot on’ advice about public speaking Reviewed By James K. Luiselli, Ed.D., ABPP, BCBA-D Remember your first oral presentation at a conference, grand rounds or similar professional venue? Most of us were anxious and filed with self-doubt. “Public Speaking for Psychologists” was written for the first-time or novice presenter in need of direction and moral support. The book is constructed as a practical guide, its many [More]

July 1st, 2010

Clinician’s Guide to Evidence-Based Practices: Mental Health and the Addictions

By Paul Efthim PhD

“Clinician’s Guide to Evidence-Based Practices: Mental Health and the Addictions” By John C. Norcross, Thomas P. Hogan & Gerald P. Koocher Oxford University Press, Inc. New York, N.Y., 2008 Psychologists author pocket-sized, practical primer Reviewed By Paul Efthim, Ph.D. Most psychologists know about the controversies surrounding evidence-based practice (EBP). In recent years, EBPs have been vilified as simplistic, mindless cookbooks that ignore the complexity of real-world clinical practice while privileging technical factors over the centrality of the therapeutic relationship. At the same time, no responsible practitioner would argue that we should ignore research evidence in determining what works and what [More]

June 1st, 2010

Cultural Competence in Trauma Therapy: Beyond the Flashback

By Paul Efthim PhD

“Cultural Competence in Trauma Therapy: Beyond the Flashback” By Laura S. Brown American Psychological Association Washington, D.C. 2008    Author links trauma to culture in groundbreaking work Reviewed By Paul Efthim, Ph.D. Seattle psychologist Laura Brown, a master therapist and pioneer in the field of ethics, boundaries and feminist psychotherapy, has released an outstanding book that addresses a significant gap in what we know about trauma treatment. At a time of excessive emphasis on the technical aspects of therapy, Brown argues persuasively that cultural competence is essential to delivering good treatment. Brown begins the book by linking trauma and culture: [More]

May 1st, 2010

The Art and Science of Mindfulness: Integrating Mindfulness Into Psychology and the Helping Professions

By Paul Efthim PhD

By Shauna L. Shapiro and Linda E. Carlson American Psychological Association Washington, D.C., 2009 Mindfulness explained in clear, rigorous work Reviewed by Paul Efthim, Ph.D. The term “mindfulness” probably evokes a mixed or even negative response for some psychologists. This is unfortunate because we in the helping professions have much to learn from Buddhist thought and meditative disciplines. Why is the field of mindfulness not more fully embraced by psychologists? Possible explanations include a lack of accurate information about mindfulness, unfamiliar terminology, resistance to working with the body in a non-intellectual way and a general mistrust of spiritual and experiential [More]