• The Devil You Know

  • Stories of Human Cruelty and Compassion
  • By: Gwen Adshead, Eileen Horne
  • Narrated by: Gwen Adshead
  • Length: 14 hrs and 22 mins
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (40 ratings)

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The Devil You Know

By: Gwen Adshead,Eileen Horne
Narrated by: Gwen Adshead
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Publisher's Summary

In this “unmissable book” (The Guardian), an internationally renowned forensic psychiatrist and psychotherapist demonstrates the remarkable human capacity for radical empathy, change, and redemption.

What drives someone to commit an act of terrible violence? Drawing from her thirty years of experience in providing therapy to people in prisons and secure hospitals who have committed serious offenses, Dr. Gwen Adshead provides fresh and surprising insights into violence and the mind. Through a collaboration with coauthor Eileen Horne, Dr. Adshead brings her extraordinary career to life in a series of unflinching portraits.

Alongside doctor and patient, we discover what human cruelty, ranging from serial homicide to stalking, arson or sexual offending, means to perpetrators, experiencing firsthand how minds can change when the people some might label as “evil” are able to take responsibility for their life stories and get to know their own minds. With outcomes ranging from hope to despair, from denial to recovery, these men and women are revealed in all their complexity and shared humanity. In this era of mass incarceration, deep cuts in mental health care and extreme social schisms, this book offers a persuasive argument for compassion over condemnation.

Moving, thought-provoking, and brilliantly told, The Devil You Know is a rare and timely book with the power to transform our ideas about cruelty and violence, and to radically expand the limits of empathy. “A welcome contribution to the literature of crime and rehabilitation” (Kirkus Reviews).

©2021 Gwen Adshead and Eileen Horne. All rights reserved (P)2021 Audible Ltd. All rights reserved

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I'm telling everyone I know about this book!

Really helped me in very unexpected ways. Great books stick with you forever. This is definitely a book I needed to hear.

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Tragically Boring

It sounds like a sleep story on my Calm app. For real. Gwen Adshead’s narration is oddly slow and pretentious. It’s like she’s channeling Isobel Grey, Baroness Merton, (nee Turnbull, previously Crawley) of “Downton Abbey.”

The text is also tedious, focusing too much on the authors and too little on the only thing that makes them interesting: their work with killers. It would be imminently more readable had it been either ghost-written or better edited, and with a professional narrator.

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Exactly what the title says - in a good way*

If you're interested in humanity, psychology/psychiatry, or just the general idea of how childhood and life experiences can lead people to do unspeakable things, this book is great. It's not a series of war stories, but rather an interesting and compassionate display of how difficult life is, what can happen when things go awry, and the complex relationships that occur between the patient, the clinicians, and the respective family members. If you enjoyed "The boy who was raised by a dog", you'll also appreciate this book - and if you read this and enjoy it, you should then go read The boy who was raised by a dog.

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Incredible Book, insightful and extremely human

I have found this to be one of the most compelling books I’ve read in a very long time. Gwen is deft at writing beautifully, thoughtfully and compassionately about some of the most difficult topics humans face.

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