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It is true. I read. Voraciously. Of course, I run a highly popular book group so as per work, I read at least eight books a year. Obviously, I read more than that! I have a cycle I more or less follow; Historical Fiction, Contemporary Fiction, Historical Non-Fiction, Contemporary Non-Fiction. I started keeping track of my reading history towards the end of 2016 via Facebook. We shall see how well it plays out. At this time, I am unaware how many books I read annually. Perhaps at the end I will share my favorite historical book of the year? Are you interested?

 

I began 2017 in the middle of Into the Fire by Jodi McIsaac (my Contemporary Fiction quota), the second in her Thin Veil series. I quite liked it considering the other books I have recently read. I was really drawn to the cover . . . there is something supremely hypnotic about a sunrise . . . I recommend the series for fans of light contemporary fantasy. Although it is best to read the first book to get a feel for the characters and their stories beforehand.

Image result for anna oHowever the first  book I will be starting this new year is The Story of Anna O. by Lucy Freeman. It is an older book. In line with Historical Non-Fiction. The summary taken directly from the jacket: “Lucy Freeman has combined her skill as a journalist with the considerable understanding of psychoanalysis, to produce this dramatic documentary account of the life of a woman who was possibly the single most important influence on Freudian thought. This is the story of Anna O, whose case history led Freud to develop his theory of the unconscious.

When Dr. Josef Breuer arrived at the house on Liechtensteinstrasse in Vienna in 1880, he thought he had come to treat a young girl for a nervous cough, but when he was shown into the sickroom, he recognized that his patient was suffering from what then was called hysteria. The young doctor stumbled almost accidentally on a method of treatment that his patient referred to as her “talking cure,” a treatment that has benefited patients of psychoanalysis for the last three-quarters of a century.

A number of years after Anna O’s treatment had been completed, Mrs. Siegmund Pappenheim and her daughter Bertha arrived in Frankfurt. Bertha became incensed by the plight of the young Jewish girls who were being sold as prostitutes in Turkey. She rescued these girls, setting up an institution for them and for unmarried mothers. A highly respected pioneer in European feminist circles,  Bertha Pappenheim died at the age of seventy-seven, her last act being to rescue one of her charges from certain imprisonment in Nazi Germany.

What was the link between Anna O and Bertha Pappenheim? It was revealed by the English psychoanalyst Ernest Jones in 1953. In her epilogue to the The Story of Anna O, Lucy Freeman adds her own highly sensitive and intelligent analysis of the effect Josef Breuer’s treatment had on the life of the courageous social worker in Frankfurt.”

Sounds intriguing, no? What are you currently reading? Or what is on your To Read List? I love to hear from you in the comment section.

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