Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Choices by Lisa Suggs

Book: Choices

Author: Lisa Suggs

Release Date:

Genre: Self-Help (Psychological: marriage and Family)

Pages: 122

Review Date: March 23, 2010

Review: Choices is a quick and provocative read that tackles the subject of divorce from a practical, solution focused perspective. As a clinical psychologist, I found this book had a pragmatism and realistic approach to divorce that clients will probably relate to in a much better way than many books on the market that are probably more geared to professionals.

On the writing style: Everyday, accessible words. Short and to the point phrases. But not in a boring manner. In fact, I felt that the author did an extremely good job making the topic of divorce “non-evil” and personal, as if you were able to get in the mind of the author and see from her perspective how divorce might be managed to the best outcome possible.

On the Target Audience: Well…for people in and around the process of divorce. Parents of those getting divorced, older children of parents getting divorced, and anyone else interested in and fascinated by the perspective of divorce!

On the best parts: I appreciated how the author remained objectively positive throughout the text without being blind to how divorce can be negative. Although I believe some readers may initially suspect this author is in denial about or is too optimistic about the idea that divorce does not have to be ugly, I disagree. Maybe I am too shrinkish here, but I got the sense that what the author is doing is (1) talking about the content of divorce—the facts and thoughts and ideas that are pertinent—but even more is trying to depict (2)the process of divorce, in other words, she is modeling how to have a positive, solution oriented philosophy moving forward with regard to how divorce might be engaged. I wonder and even suspect that divorce was extremely ugly for her—heartbreaking, not something she wanted, even wonder that maybe she had many mature and defining moments that required to her to big the bigger and better person---obviously I don’t know, but that would be my guess because I have worked with so many people in divorce, but you never get this sense from this author. It is more like “hey, this sucks, yeah, but it’s happening, and here’s how it can happen less painfully, and maybe even in a way that some self learning can come out of it.

Closing thoughts and overall summary: I found this book helpful, practical, informative, humanistic, intriguing, emotional yet professional, and overall—and perhaps this is the most important quality—consultative: it did not force guilt into the equation, but offers many wonderful and pragmatic pointers and insights that seem to say, “hey you can do what you want, but here is how I got burned, and feel free to not replicate!” Highly recommended!

Heath Sommer, Ph.D.
Author: The Manufactured Identity

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