Author: Alman H. Bond, PH.D
Publisher: Bancroft Press
ISBN: 978-1-61099-164-7 (ARC COPY)
With her most recent tome, Hillary Rodham Clinton On The Couch, Dr. Alma H. Bond has once again used her skills as a psychoanalyst combined with extensive research in putting together a fascinating exposé of the life of the former first lady, Hillary Rodham Clinton.
One word of caution, and as mentioned on the copyright page of the book, although factual information forms the core of the book, “the book is nonetheless a work of fiction, and is not necessarily a complete or historically accurate rendering of the life of the former first lady, despite considerable effort invested to make it so.” In addition, Bond never served as Hillary's psychoanalyst and her request to interview her was turned down. With that in mind, Bond's impressions and analysis of Hillary, whom she greatly admires, gives readers an interesting perspective as to what makes Hillary tick and her many accomplishments while she had to deal with her husband's philandering. Oh yes, we do learn about her feelings about good old Bill's indiscretions!
The introductory notes of the book introduces us to Dr. Darcy Dale, psychoanalyst and author, whom Bond has used before in her previous On the Couch series concerning Marilyn Monroe and Jackie Kennedy Onassis. Dale informs us that unlike the books about the latter two, the present book is written not as a famous psychoanalyst but rather as an admirer of Hillary Clinton, whom she considers a political genius. What is related in the ensuing chapters are summaries of fictional private sessions, and as mentioned, in no sense are these summaries everything Hillary revealed to Dale or what the latter thought at the time, but just what she believes to be important.
In the first session Dale is astonished when her excited secretary appears in her office announcing that Hillary was in the waiting room to see her for professional help. Dale realizes that it is not going to be an easy task to deal with the former First Lady on a professional level, nonetheless, she is determined to find out who really is Hillary Clinton. In fact, she pictures a door with several heavy locks on it with herself banging on it without success. Didn't Hillary's high school newspaper label her “Sister Frigidaire?”
As the sessions continue we learn about Hillary's childhood, her abusive and anti-Semitic father, the influence of her up-bringing, her closeness to her mother, her various accomplishments as Secretary of State, the role she played as First Lady and the influence she had over Bill, her role as U.S. Senator representing the State of New York, her foreign policy beliefs, and the Benghazi affair and was she at fault.
Some of the tidbits of information that were brought to my attention, and there were many, was that Hillary was the only former First Lady of the United States to become a member of the United States Cabinet, and that she was the third woman in the entire history to hold the position of Secretary of State. One of the many causes she has been involved in is the advancement of the cause of women around the world. Other achievements include her co-sponsoring of the Family Entertainment Protection Act, becoming a national advocate for improving veterans' health benefits, and dozens of other which are far too numerous to mention in this review.
Bond has skillfully assembled a vivid chronicle of a strong woman who has faced immense challenges throughout her life and was able to pull through no matter how painful the journey may have been. Bond's take on the details of this captivating woman are compelling and convincing, even if you don't like Hillary and question her accomplishments, as many have done and will do if she decides to run for President. The book is never dull, although it may be analytic at times it is never pedantic.