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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Steven T. Herron, MD (University of Arizona Health Sciences Center)
Description: In an attempt to compile the most recent advances in the evaluation, treatment, and risk assessment of sex offenders, the editors call on the expertise of many of the world scholars (clinical, legal, and theoretical), who explain the research and help readers understand the multitude of challenges related to working with this population.
Purpose: The editors aim to make readers aware of the advances made in the area of sex offender research over the last 20 years by highlighting the most recent information.
Audience: This book is directed primarily at the small population of clinicians who assess and treat sex offenders, as well as at the professionals in the justice system who prosecute, defend, or preside over these particularly difficult defendants.
Features: The edited book is divided into seven sections, and most chapters are penned by different authors. It is designed to take readers from the beginning of the process, through assessment and diagnosis, to treatment. Specific sections cover juveniles and special populations. Each chapter ends with a lengthy, up-to-date, and thorough reference list. There are a limited number of tables throughout the work, and even fewer diagrams.
Assessment: There is no doubt that the literature on the topics this work addresses is limited and distributed over a large number of specialties, making accessing it time consuming and tiring. The editors have assembled some of the most well recognized legal, clinical, and forensic practitioners throughout the world who have boiled down basic and advanced information into manageable and comprehensible chapters. The book's biggest drawbacks are the layout of the chapters (using a two-column format similar to a journal), which are distracting and necessitate the use of a smaller type font, and its unattractive visual appeal. Without frequent diagrams, tables, graphs, and charts, readers are left with the sensation they are viewing a never-ending academic article, and this can lead to some degree of monotony, even when moving from chapter to chapter. However, these criticisms do little to dampen the quality of the work. It is well written, well researched, and well edited, and will be a valuable addition to the library of any clinician working with the sex offender population.