'Escaping Psychiatry' is a collection of three novellas with the same protagonist, Mary, a psychiatrist and writer. She is trying to develop her literary career but circumstances and friends conspire to keep dragging her back to psychiatry. In the third novella, 'Memory', Mary runs out of her apartment after a difficult encounter with her friend Phil, and goes missing. When she is found it seems that she was hit in the head, abducted and raped. As a result of the head injury she initially cannot recall what happened or remember many details of her life. She never recovers memory for the assault and finds it difficult to come to terms with something she cannot recall. Her relationships and her whole life are left in turmoil following the traumatic incident. The clues point towards a serial killer who could not finish his job in her case. But some things do not fit in. Who disturbed the killer? Why was she left there? The crime and the investigation surrounding it have a profound impact on Mary who decides that she needs to reconsider her life and start anew.
Exploring issues such as mental illness, memory, police investigation, trauma, serial killers and life as a single professional woman, 'Memory' is an intense and intriguing novella. Although this is a fictional work, the author, a forensic psychiatrist, brings her expertise and insight to the material, lifting it above a standard crime caper.
If you enjoy the characters, psychological depth and pace, why not check the other two novellas in the series: 'Cannon Fodder' and 'Teamwork'?