My review of The Speaking Cure
May 26, 2010 Leave a comment
Still slightly behind schedule but doing well regardless, The Speaking Cure by David Homel is book number nine in my “26 in 52 Challenge” where I try to read basically a book every two weeks this year.
The Speaking Cure was a book I picked up on a whim at BMV Books. I was going to only grab a few others, but the price point and intriguing story line caught my attention long enough for me to throw it on the pile.
The book follows Aleks Jovic, a clinical psychologist (not a doctor as he so often points out) who is unable to leave Yugoslavia, which is in the midst of a war. He is opposed to the war in its entirety but says his people are ones made for suffering; so much so they welcome it in their lives. Jovic is requisitioned by his government to help run a psychiatric clinic over the phone for soldiers in the field who wish to seek guidance. Though opposed to the idea of supporting the government in such a way, he’s resigned to his fate and reports for duty. Along with a relationship built up with one of his patients from his backroom private practice, the novel takes a look at the psychological impact of war and what standing up to those above you, in even the simplest way, like writing a novella, can help turn the mental tide.
I appreciate what the book offers readers and I was more than happy to jump at the chance to read something not about the Americans in World War II. However, something didn’t really click for me. The characters all had a bit of mystery to them, I understand that, but I felt a disconnect while reading. I didn’t seem to care what happened good or bad, because of that missing element.
If you’re into war books, or are connected to this specific war in any way, this may be a good read for you. For me, however, I would’ve passed if I had to pay full price. 2.5/5.