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Book Club - April 2024.


We run a book club for our Patreon supporters each quarter, where we all read the same True Crime non-fiction book and then discuss this. Previously we have read titles including I Survived by Victoria Cilliers, and Manhunt- The Night Stalker by Colin Sutton, amongst others.


We then have a live event one evening where Mark & I discuss the book together, and invite our Patreon supporters to share their thoughts about too. Our listeners leave comments to join in the conversations, and we always have such a good time just chatting and having a drink together. The book club is open to Patreons on all tiers of support. We have even had special guests on the screen, we are always honoured when our listeners are brave enough to join us to join us on camera!


This time the book we read was In Two Minds by Dr Sohom Das.

 

The synopsis reads:

 

Shocking, eye-opening and grimly fascinating, these are the true stories, patients and cases that have characterised a career spent treating mentally disordered offenders.

As a forensic psychiatrist, it's Dr Das' job to treat and rehabilitate what the tabloids might call the 'criminally insane', many of whom assault, rob, rape and even kill. His work takes him to high-security prisons and securely locked hospital wards across the country, as well as inside courtrooms, giving evidence as an expert witness.

From the young woman who smothered her two-year-old nephew in a flash of psychosis, to the teenager who set his house on fire with his mother locked inside, Dr Das must delve into the minds of these violent offenders to elicit their symptoms of mental illness, understand their actions and prevent future atrocities.

In this honest, revealing and at times humorous memoir, Dr Das shares stories from his 15 years as a psychiatric doctor working with this dangerous clientele, detailing some of his most extreme, heart-breaking and bizarre cases - and how he's learned to live with his mistakes when the worse happens.


We have met Dr Das a few times at Crime Con, and have spoken to him over the years, (he even kindly gifted us some copies of this book last year to give away as part of a competition) and we are both fans of his, so we were excited to read this book.


We both really enjoyed an opportunity to learn about Dr Das' life, career, his "reasons why" and we really liked the insights into the prison service. The listeners who joined us absolutely agreed with us too.


For Mark, the bitesize chapters and the fact that Dr Das himself narrated the audiobook were real positives to this book... As we all know he is obsessed with prison, so the insights into this really spoke to him. He enjoyed the humour, and the humour was appreciated by many of our listeners, Mags for example sharing how she enjoyed that Dr Das made jokes about himself often. Considering the subject matter, this is a very funny book.


'For me, this book was an opportunity to learn a real lesson in humility, it made me think many times "there but for the grace of God go I" when learning about people who were at absolute breaking point whilst suffering from some sort of mental break. The book really opens your eyes to the idea that someone who does something abhorrent may well not be evil. The idea of forgiveness ran throughout the book.


During book club we discussed "mad, bad, or sad" a lot. We have decided to try and think about this more when presenting our podcast cases.


Dr Das comes across as a very kind, caring and compassionate man, this book could have been stuffy or preachy, but his unique style and the fact he doesn't act like a "boring" psychiatrist means this is a great read. We felt a little sad that his work touches many people, but that he doesn't get to see things all the way through to a conclusion.




Love,

Bethan.

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