Charlie Weir is a man who tackles other people's demons for a living. He has seen every kind of trauma during his years as a psychiatrist in New York.Yet he hasn't found a way of resolving his own conflicts, particularly the fatal mistake that caused his wife and daughter to leave him condemning him to corrosive loneliness and restless anger.Years later, he meets a beautiful but damaged woman who promises to restore his dwindling faith in both his profession and himself. But as he realizes that she has become more of a patient than a lover, events conspire to send him reeling toward the abyss. Addictive and enthralling, Trauma is Patrick McGrath's most riveting work to date.
“McGrath at his dark-hearted best.” —O, The Oprah Magazine“Beautifully crafted and paced, Trauma [is] either a superb psychological thriller or a masterly evocation of modern alienation and despair. . . . A terrific literary entertainment, one that will keep you on edge.” —The Washington Post “Full of sensitive, well-observed touches [and] elegant when it needs to be. . . . McGrath makes us see that our own minds are the most haunted of houses.” —Los Angeles Times“Ambitious. . . . McGrath uses his potent storytelling powers to draw us into [his narrator's] fevered brain and convey his emotional distress.” —The New York Times"The inversion of roles, the blurring of the boundaries between the rational and the irrational, the violence, the twisted sexual passions, the slipperiness of memory: these are familiar themes in McGrath's fiction. Here they are recombined in powerful and imaginative ways. Trauma is a gripping psychological thriller. McGrath's prose is taut and lean; his way with characters is deft; and his explorations of the dark side of human nature are disturbing. And at the novel's centre, the descent of its narrator from a false sense of superiority into a pit of madness and despair is handled with great skill." —Andrew Scull, The Times Literary Supplement“Tortuous, often gripping…The novel is aptly titled, since trauma can be said to be the origin and the end of its insidiously uncoiling developments.” —Sven Birkerts, The New York Times Book Review“A haunting story of a man in the grip of a painful and beautifully articulated spiritual malaise.” —Publishers Weekly