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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Michael S. Goldsby, PhD, CCRP (Family Psychiatry of The Woodlands)
Description: This book examines partner stalking from the victim's perspective. The authors have combined substantial research literature with personal stories of 62 women whose partners victimized them in abuse-stalking relationships. These women provide in-depth interviews about the history of their abuse-stalking relationships and the negative physical, mental, economic, and social impact that that these relationships have had on their lives. The stories reveal what it means to be stalked, not by a stranger or distant admirer, but by someone who was at one time trusted and valued.
Purpose: The purpose of this book is two-fold: first, to give women experiencing the victimization of partner stalking a voice to increase awareness about the dynamics of partner stalking; and second, to provide relevant, victim-generated accounts of abuse-stalking relationships. The unique and often painful stories of the women are intended to bridge the gap between the current literature and the realities of women who experience the painful emotional and physical trauma inherent in theses relationships.
Audience: Clearly, the information in this book is targeted to women in partner stalking relationships, as well as for women in general who have a need to better understand this important issue. It will also be of value to individuals in the public and private sectors, including marriage and family counselors and other mental health professionals, community leaders, legislators, judges, and police. This book should be require reading for graduate students whose intended career path includes provision of psychological and/or social services to this vulnerable population.
Features: The bulk of information in this book is presented as a result of a study that examined the phenomena of stalking in the context of personal relationships, as opposed to other types of stalking such as celebrity stalking. This unique study, which chronicled the personal stories of women who have been victims of abuse-stalking relationships, was conducted by the authors and is reported in this book in an eight chapter, narrative format. Numerous excerpts from the study participants' stories are included in order for readers to gain a better understanding from a first-hand perspective of what it is like to be the victim of a stalker. Of special importance are the personal accounts of these resilient women who have effectively coped with the horrible abuse inherent in abuse-stalking relationships.
Assessment: This is the premier book on the subject of stalking relationships to date, and is the most important contribution to the advancement of knowledge and awareness of this contemporary and important issue in partner relationships. The authors have done a magnificent job of capturing the essence of what it is like to be the victim of a stalker through their timely study and extensive literature review. This book is a must-read for every practitioner in the mental health field.