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Posted on: October 15, 2020

Hidden Valley Road: Inside the Mind of an American Family by Robert Kolker

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The heartrending story of a midcentury American family with twelve children, six of them diagnosed with schizophrenia, that became science’s great hope in the quest to understand the disease. (Amazon)

Hidden Valley Road is a riveting true story of an American family that reads like a medical detective journey and sheds light on a topic so many of us face: mental illness.”—Oprah Winfrey

“The curse of the Galvin family is the stuff of Greek tragedy. Kolker tells their story with great compassion, burrowing inside the particular delusions and hospitalizations of each brother while chronicling the family’s increasingly desperate search for help. But Hidden Valley Road is more than a narrative of despair, and some of the most compelling chapters come from its other half, as a medical mystery.”
—Sam Dolnick, The New York Times Book Review

“A stunning, riveting chronicle crackling with intelligence and empathy . . . Kolker tackles this extraordinarily complex story so brilliantly and effectively that readers will be swept away. An exceptional, unforgettable, and significant work that must not be missed.”Booklist, starred review

“Riveting and disquieting . . . Kolker deftly follows the psychiatric, chemical, and biological theories proposed to explain schizophrenia and the various treatments foisted upon the brothers. Most poignantly, he portrays the impact on the unafflicted children of the brothers’ illness, an oppressive emotional atmosphere, and the family’s festering secrets . . . A family portrait of astounding depth and empathy.”
Kirkus Reviews, starred review

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