Description: This book is a comprehensive and practical guide to the field of child forensic psychiatry. A deceptively simple but elegant format is used to update readers in the field.
Purpose: The purpose is to present the latest updates in the field while adding specialty information relevant to modern times. For example, the child pornography chapter looks at the unique difficulties introduced by the Internet. Case examples translate what's on the page into real life situations. The book more than meets the author's objectives and will likely be an instant classic.
Audience: The book is written for child psychiatrists, anyone working with children and adolescents, attorneys, and psychologists. General forensic mental health professionals will also gain many insights from the book. You cannot and should not ignore a book from such preeminent minds in child forensic psychiatry.
Features: The book covers basic issues in child forensic psychiatry (e.g., the role of a forensic expert, child custody, child abuse) and gives due emphasis to sections on youth violence and juvenile offenders. Several topics are presented that are rarely explored in other texts, such as vicarious trauma in clinicians working with minors, Munchausen by proxy, and children's access to weapons. The book presents relevant legal and clinical issues, potential pitfalls, case examples, and action guidelines for each topic. While the book is characteristically parsimonious, occasional chapters feel oversimplified. Also, there is a minimal use of graphs, tables, and pictures.
Assessment: The material covered in the book is clear and practical. The book succinctly presents material that any child forensic psychiatrist can and should master. It is a good book and I recommend it.