The Good Psychologist by Noam Shpancer
A Novel

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Synopsis

"Noam Shpancer portrays the oft-hidden world of psychotherapy with unparalleled authenticity, compassion, and wit . . . An astonishing debut."—Jonathan Kellerman

Noam Shpancer's stunning debut novel opens as a psychologist reluctantly takes on a new client—an exotic dancer whose severe anxiety is keeping her from the stage. The psychologist, a solitary professional who also teaches a lively night class, helps the client confront her fears. But as treatment unfolds, her struggles and secrets begin to radiate onto his life, upsetting the precarious balance in his unresolved relationship with Nina, a married former colleague with whom he has a child—a child he has never met. As the shell of his detachment begins to crack, he suddenly finds himself too deeply involved, the boundary lines between professional and personal, between help and harm, blurring dangerously.

With its wonderfully distinctive narrative voice, rich with humor and humanity, The Good Psychologist leads the reader on a journey into the heart of the therapy process and beyond, examining some of the fundamental questions of the soul: to move or be still; to defy or obey; to let go or hold on.


 

About Noam Shpancer

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Noam Shpancer was born and raised on an Israeli kibbutz. He received his Ph.D. in clinical psychology from Purdue University. Currently, he is professor of psychology at Otterbein College and a licensed practicing clinical psychologist. He lives in Columbus, Ohio.
 
Published August 3, 2010 by Henry Holt and Co.. 253 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Good Psychologist

Kirkus Reviews

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In yet another life the psychologist teaches Introduction to the Principles of Therapy, an evening course at a local college, so we get to witness his explanation of psychological cases both from a general, theoretical position and from the perspective of individual cases he’s working on.

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The Guardian

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"Perhaps distance and humiliation are her home feelings, her native emotional tongue, to which she seeks to return to charge repeatedly at the source of her torment," muses the shrink.

Mar 12 2011 | Read Full Review of The Good Psychologist: A Novel

Publishers Weekly

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The unnamed psychologist at the center of Shpancer's intelligent and suspenseful debut is at a crossroads—at the college where he teaches a night class, his brightest student is also the most troubled;

May 24 2010 | Read Full Review of The Good Psychologist: A Novel

MostlyFiction Book Reviews

The good psychologist reserves the business of closeness for family members and beloved pets and leaves the business of salvation to religious bureaucrats and street corner eccentrics.” Noam Shpancer has written a heady and unique novel that takes its primary form as therapy sessions between ...

Aug 03 2010 | Read Full Review of The Good Psychologist: A Novel

Portland Book Review

The Good Psychologist is a brilliantly written, fictional story of a practicing psychologist who mundanely goes through the therapeutic process with his many patients and also teaches a night psychology class.

Nov 24 2010 | Read Full Review of The Good Psychologist: A Novel

Bookmarks Magazine

As the shell of his detachment begins to crack, he suddenly finds himself too deeply involved, the boundary lines between professional and personal, between help and harm, blurring dangerously.

Aug 02 2010 | Read Full Review of The Good Psychologist: A Novel

M/C Anderson

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Oct 10 2010 | Read Full Review of The Good Psychologist: A Novel

The Blurb

The Good Psychologist of the title remains nameless throughout and I'll stop short of saying that he is based directly on Shpancer himself (I wouldn't be so presumptuous) but the similarities are obvious in at least two of the three facets of his life that we will ...

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