A plodding, repetitive self-help manifesto by psychologist Caplan (Psychiatry/Univ. of Toronto; Between Women, 1981, etc.) that accuses experts in the fields of medicine, law, and psychiatry of deliberately using rank-pulling strategies to intimidate the hapless consumer. In chapters with titles like ``What They Say and What They Don't Say'' and ``What They Do and What They Don't Do,'' Caplan draws up a laundry list of devices that doctors and other experts routinely employ—such as using needlessly complex language, refusing to answer questions, or failing to give all the necessary information—to lord it over their patients or clients. The author cites numerous examples of people who have been victimized by experts—like the woman who ended up on a kidney dialysis machine because her psychiatrist, who'd put her on lithium, had failed to monitor the antidepressant's side effects. Moreover, Caplan charges that our childlike insistence on seeing doctors and lawyers as gods instead of as the ordinary nebbishes many of them are—men and women who may have graduated at the bottom of their med- or law- school class—prevents us from wising up and demanding the treatment we deserve. Too many conspiratorial references to the evil experts as ``them'' and to the cheated consumers as ``us'' tend to infantilize the reader, as well as to simplify the problems of living in a complex, highly specialized world where technical language is sometimes unavoidable. If you're as smart as Caplan claims, you probably don't need to read this book.

Pub Date: Feb. 9, 1994

ISBN: 0-02-905235-1

Page Count: 200

Publisher: Free Press

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 1993

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...



Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

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