The Philosophical Practitioner - Larry Abrams

Released August 2011

Telemachus Press

Book Review by Tracy Farnsworth

Larry Abrams' The Philosophical Practitioner is a short mystery involving a philosophical practitioner - -think counselor who uses philosophy instead of psychology. Eric is used to a variety of clients coming into his office, but he never expects one of them, a mysterious woman, to announce she's seeing him because she plans to kill someone. When he learns he's the person she plans to kill, she gives him a name and says that when he remembers that woman, he'll know why he's about to die. Eric races to figure out what he's done - if he's even done anything - and to figure out how he can prevent his death.

The premise for The Philosophical Practitioner is unique and certainly caught my attention. I had to keep reading to find out what Eric had done.  Despite this, I also found flaws with the writing that seemed to be more of a distraction. One is the obsession between the main character and his cat. I have cats, and I adore them. Given that, I now that others wouldn't necessarily enjoy my passion for my cats. Reading pages of "my cat couldn't decide whose lap to sit in or my cat greeted me and wanted immediate attention when I walked in the door" got under my skin again. There was too much focus on the main character's cat for my liking.

The other issue I had was the main character's actions. His attitude and actions seemed unrealistic to me. If I have a crazy woman threatening to kill me, I wouldn't be as dismissive as he is throughout the book. I had a hard time relating to his character for that reason.

In the end, The Philosophical Practitioner isn't a bad book, but it's not one I'd have for my keeper shelf.


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