Top critical review
7 of 10 people found this helpful
on 20 May 2007
I decided to buy this book because of the excellent review it had received, unfortunately I do not share the same opinions as the other reviewer and there are several reasons for this. The prologue of the book is very interesting, however I frequently found myself rereading the prologue throughout the main text because I found it hard to believe I was reading the same book. In the prologue Mr Holland writes about his unhappy childhood and how he was forced to take on the parental role of guardian and protector, I assumed for his family and the book is described as being written in a no holds barred style. However this was not really evident within the book possibly because he has tried to limit his writing to his spiritual journey which I feel was a mistake because it leaves the reader feeling as though they only have half a story. Mr Holland's style of writing is very guarded about his private life with the exception of his father's alcoholism which I found very annoying. I felt really sorry for Mr Holland's parents whilst reading the book because I was given the impression that they hadn't done or given him enough and that the book is tinged with some resentment and bitterness. I thought it was completely unnecessary for Mr Holland to out his father as an alcoholic if indeed this is the case. If this was going to be written about couldn't he have included a quote or section written by his father if it was intrinsic to his spiritual journey. The lack of personal detail in the book actually meant that as a reader I assumed Mr Holland had very little to do with his family for extremely long periods of time and I was still left guessing about his role as guardian and protector for them and who exactly they were. There are three main elements to the book, his spiritual journey, casebook and two techniques. In my opinion these elements did not sit well together, in fact Mr Holland might have faired better if he had written three separate books.