"Hidden Valley Road: Inside the Mind of an American Family"

Jul 21, 2020

Our guest is Robert Kolker, a bestselling author and journalist who has written for New York Magazine, Bloomberg Businessweek, The New York Times Magazine, Wired, and other publications. He joins us to discuss his fascinating new book, "Hidden Valley Road: Inside the Mind of an American Family." It's a page-turning profile -- as much a detailed group biography as it is a keen work of science journalism -- of a certain post-WWII American family in which several of the family's twelve children suffered from acute schizophrenia. As per a starred review of this book in Kirkus Reviews: "Riveting and disquieting.... Kolker deftly follows the psychiatric, chemical, and biological theories proposed to explain schizophrenia and the various treatments foisted upon the brothers. Most poignantly, he portrays the impact on the unafflicted children of the brothers' illness, an oppressive emotional atmosphere, and the family's festering secrets.... A family portrait of astounding depth and empathy."family portrait of astounding depth and empathy."