There seem to be as many schools of thought on psychiatry as there are individuals in the practice of psychiatry. This excellent work by Niall McLaren M.D. takes a comprehensive and concise look at the major theories of the practice of psychiatry. The book is well done, set up in a very easy to follow format. Each theory is explained in detail, and the author offers his opinion on the flaws and fallacies of each. It's obvious that much research and study has gone into each review, as well as into the problem areas and better working models. Will everyone agree with every opinion delivered by McLaren? Of course not. However, the review and research does lead to a rethinking of each theory; and many excellent and thought-provoking statements are made. I was particularly interested in the way the author viewed the theory regarding panic and anxiety attacks. It offered me an interesting perspective I had never considered before, and one that actually makes a lot of sense and is practical. I have suffered from panic and anxiety attacks personally for many years, and found much to ponder in his ideas and views. This is not a book for beginners in psychology/psychiatry/neuroscience. I believe that to really understand and appreciate the depth of work that went into this publication, a reader would need a somewhat more intense understanding than just the basics of the science. I would recommend it to anyone with a working background in the field, and believe that they would find it as thought-provoking as I have.It will definitely remain on my shelves as a future reference. I fully expect that at some point it will be recognized as a groundbreaking work in the field.
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