STARRED REVIEW
September 26, 2017

As psychological as a thriller can get

By A.F. Brady

Debut novelist A.F. Brady has stuck to the old adage “write what you know,” as her experience as a psychotherapist in Manhattan clearly informs The Blind. The result is a twisting, fast-paced tale that may leave readers, examining what they know of themselves and mental illness.

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What is life inside a mental institution? Some literature and film paint institutional life as a soothing break from reality. The hospitals are often located in remote areas with rambling gardens, places where patients can take a break from the stressors and triggers of daily life.

Maybe there’s some truth to that. But Sam James can’t relate; she’s a psychologist at Typhlos, an institution in the middle of Manhattan. Her life outside the institution’s walls is often as gray as life inside. Although James is willing to take on the most difficult patients, she’s less eager to confront her own problems. Among those: alcohol and a controlling boyfriend.

When Sam is assigned Richard, with whom other therapists haven’t been able to connect, she’s sure she’s up for the challenge. But Richard refuses to answer even the most basic intake questions, setting Sam on her heels. As she attempts to understand him, she’s forced to take a look at herself and her habits as well. You could say it’s an example of the blind leading the blind.

Debut novelist A.F. Brady has stuck to the old adage “write what you know,” as her experience as a psychotherapist in Manhattan clearly informs The Blind. The result is a twisting, fast-paced tale that may leave readers, like Sam, examining what they know of themselves and mental illness.

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The Blind

The Blind

By A.F. Brady
Park Row
ISBN 9780778330875

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