Thief of Reason by Judy J. Johnson is the story of Ricky Wright, a 28-year-old college student who understands how it feels to be denied reasoning all too well. Ricky’s father is a raging alcoholic with strong views on any subject under the sun – but so is Ricky. Amongst the family dysfunction, Ricky decides to seek counseling. We have all felt that immense need to make someone understand where we are coming from. But some people in this world completely refuse to reason with you. Author Judy Johnson brilliantly brings this relatable narrative to life in a very engaging story.
Thief of Reason is a thoughtfully crafted coming of age story realistically portraying family dysfunction and how dogmatic thinking can affect interpersonal relationships. The story explores the subject through an artistic lens, and adds an analytical element in a refreshing way.
Through the “Shrink” character of Dr. Grey and others, the author demonstrates a multi-faceted view of toxic situations and the people who cause them. Showing that there is more than one side to every story and that peoples’ habitual actions can derive from a history of trauma, the analytical approach to human behavior made the characters in this novel feel well-developed and relatable.
I really enjoyed how the story is told gradually changed and evolved over time. Over its 256 pages, Ricky’s character is meticulously developed. The slow and steady method of storytelling suits the narrative in this novel well, and demonstrates a realistic approach to real-life issues. It was absolutely refreshing to read a character driven story that relies on characters that feel authentic and that face obstacles I can relate to and understand.
If you are looking for a novel that entertains, provokes profound thoughts, and teaches valuable lessons, Thief of Reason is right for you. This is an intellectually invigorating and emotionally charged novel that I highly recommend.
Pages: 256 | ASIN: B08SGMZP7T
Thomas Anderson, Editor
“This lively tale captures family conflict in a most entertaining manner while, without being preachy, teaching important lessons along the way. The story involves family dynamics that will be all too familiar to many. Johnson expertly presents the difficulties that arise when well-entrenched, emotionally-laden beliefs are challenged, and the damage this brings to valued relationships. Readers will not only be entertained but will come away with important psychological insights that are likely to resonate in their own lives.”
–Professor James Alcock, PhD. Department of Psychology. York University, Toronto, ON. Author of Belief: What it Means to Believe and Why Our Convictions Are So Compelling (Prometheus Books, 2018), and many articles for academics and the general public.
“An unusual psychological novel. A young man wants to love his embittered father, pursue romance with a woman whose beliefs he doesn’t always share, and unblock his creative writing dreams. Instead, he is trapped in family frustration and resentment. The author weaves in narrative with descriptions of how untested assumptions and “black and white” thinking can lead to a cycle of misery and self sabotage. But the story lets us glimpse that even hardcore, rigid attitudes can change when crisis and opportunity come together.”
–Professor Monica Baehr, PhD. Department of Psychology. Mount Royal University, Calgary.
“From the first chapter I was swept into a festive family dinner where tender moments brush against harsh unfolding events. Lots of foreboding build interest that carried me through the story.”
–Claudette Whiting, BN, Calgary, AB
“I think you (the author) did an excellent job of getting the reader to understand the dynamics and biases often unconsciously at play in our responses to life’s multiplicity of engagements.”
–Bill R., Vancouver, B.C.
“Judy Johnson’s characters are instantly recognizable, the scenes are vivid and the tension is much too real. Remarkable and full of insights.”
–Susan Wright, LL.B., Political Commentator, Susan on the Soapbox,
“I thought the author did an excellent job of luring the reader into some self-analysis as Rick’s sessions progressed. She demonstrated the use of valuable therapeutic techniques only a skilled therapist would know.
She also assuaged the fear or skepticism of therapy that many readers may have and hopefully encouraged some who could benefit from therapy to investigate it. As such the author may ultimately motivate some readers to make life altering changes – changes that could even save their own life.
The description of Rick finally saying he loved his father and his father trying to reply brought a tear to my eye, and that is hard to do.”
–Dale Rukke, M.Ed., Vancouver, B.C.
Testimonials for “What’s So Wrong With Being Absolutely Right: The Dangerous Nature of Dogmatic Belief“
“Judy Johnson presents a compelling argument for viewing dogmatism as a serious problem. In this nonfiction book, she provides lively, illustrative case studies for the characteristics of this personality trait and draws from traditional and contemporary personality theories, biopsychology, social learning theory, Buddhism, and evolutionary psychology to outline the major influences that shape its trajectory.
“By focusing on how people believe, not what they believe, we can minimize dogmatism’s harmful effects in our personal lives as well as our educational, political, religious, and other social institutions.”
City University of New York
“Dr. Johnson ably confronts one of the most pressing dangers of our time, dogmatic thinking in all its forms. This important and timely examination of its roots, the processes involved, and possible societal remedies will be of interest to all who value reason, and should be required reading for anyone dealing with the many enemies of reason on society’s behalf.”
Professor James Alcock, PhD
York University, Toronto, ON.