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A Salty Lake of Tears Paperback – January 5, 2011

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Editorial Reviews


A very creative autobiography that weaves early childhood memories and dark underground travels with playful characters, Mother Earth, and the scent of roses. Though the memoir is born out of pain, it clearly reflects a profound psychological transformation that occurs when the deep feminine spirit is invoked. --John Allan, PhD, Professor Emeritus, Counseling Psychology, University of British Columbia, Canada

A unique combination of autobiography, fantasy, and its exploration of the symbolic meaning of life. Lois Carey's familiarity with Jungian symbolism and Greek mythology permeates her account of complicated family relationships and recreated childhood memories and anxieties. Like no other memoir, this evocative blend of fantasy and reality resonates with compelling appeal and strength. --Nancy Boyd Webb, Distinguished Professor of Social Work Emerita, Fordham University

In her latest book, Lois Carey deftly transmutes her personal biography of pain and joy into a universal tapestry that is the analogue for the human condition. She infuses myth, original poetry, and allegory, and interweaves the story of the white rabbit from 'Alice and Wonderland' throughout her emotional journey. This is the story of a complex woman, a brilliant scholar, and a devoted, caring mother, wife and daughter. I highly recommend this read for those looking to deepen their personal experiences and connect the dots on their emotional landscape, as Ms. Carey has so done in this wonderful gift to the reader of inner discovery. --Eric J. Green, PhD, Assistant Professor, University of North Texas at Dallas

About the Author

Lois Carey, LCSW, RPT-S is in private practice in Nyack, NY; her specialty is Sandplay Therapy. She is Past-President of the New York Branch of the Association for Play Therapy. Lois is author of Sandplay Therapy for Children and Families; co-editor and contributor of Family Sandplay Therapy and School-Based Play Therapy; editor and contributor of Expressive and Creative Arts Methods for Trauma Survivors.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 112 pages
  • Publisher: il piccolo editions; First edition (January 5, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1926715470
  • ISBN-13: 978-1926715476
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.3 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,165,493 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Grady Harp HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on February 17, 2011
Format: Paperback
Lois Carey is a fascinating woman - a Jungian influenced therapist who utilizes Sandplay therapy in her New York practice, a poet, a writer of rather amazing skill, and a disciple of promoting the full or authentic life. A SALTY LAKE OF TEARS is a memoir/autobiography of such creative proportions that it will appeal to all types of readers - those who love fine story writing, followers of Jungian analysis, and those who appreciate the creative bent of a writer who takes chances in technique by incorporating chronological data of a life that has been anything but uneventful (!) in family developments along with random poetry, fairy tales, metaphors, scripts for a stage play, and final analysis.

For people outside Carey's field a few definitions will aid in appreciating this book. For example, Carey's life altered with her discovering the benefits of sandplay, a technique about which she writes today as well as incorporating this technique in her practice. According to one dictionary definition: 'Sandtray, sandbox or sandplay therapy is a form of experiential workshop which allows greater exploration of deep emotional issues. Sandplay therapy is suitable for children and adults and allows them to reach a deeper insight into and resolution of a range of issues in their lives such as deep anger, depression, abuse or grief.....Through a safe and supportive process they are able to explore their world using a sandtray and a collection of miniatures. Accessing hidden or previously unexplored areas is often possible using this expressive and creative way of working which does not rely on "talk" therapy. The client is given the possibility, by means of figures and the arrangement of the sand in the area bounded by the sandbox, to set up a world corresponding to his or her inner state.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Martha Sloane on July 13, 2011
Format: Paperback
From a childhood suffused with pain and bewilderment Lois Carey, a world-renowned psychologist, has built a life rich in wisdom, compassion and grace.

Dysfunctional Family is perhaps today's most popular catch-all explanation for every kind of malady that afflicts the individual and society but it's often difficult to plumb the depths or measure the degree to which the diagnosis is true or just rationalization. Horrendous childhood only begins to describe what Ms. Carey endured as she grew to adulthood. Through gradually increasing self-awareness, hard work, dedication to family and a lifelong striving toward wholeness and spirtuality, she became first a wife and mother, then a student and artist, and eventually a globally respected authority on Sand-Play Therapy, a valuable tool in the treatment of children and adults alike.

This unconventional autobiography includes dreams and even folktale-like interludes that explore the realm of our inner being, and the reader turns the last page wth a satisfying sense of hope, discovery, and of a life admirably lived.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Smoky Zeidel on July 20, 2011
Format: Paperback
I'm a big fan of memoirs, especially those written by people who are not particularly famous. I'd rather read about the lives of ordinary people who do extraordinary things than famous people who have not, necessarily, done anything extraordinary.

Admittedly, memoirs can, at times, be a little ho-hum. What seems fascinating to the person who is having an experience may not be the least bit interesting to someone who wasn't there. On the opposite end of the scale, I've read memoirs where writers had such an over-inflated opinion of themselves their books took on an air of absurdity.

In A Salty Lake of Tears, author Lois Carey has, for the most part, avoided these pitfalls of memoir writing. The book is unique in that it combines autobiography with fantasy as it explores the deep hurt of her earliest memories, her lifelong anxieties, and her relationship with her divorced parents. It is a fascinating read.

The book opens with a dream--a dream we quickly recognize. "A harried rabbit scurries by, muttering to himself as he runs," Carey writes. "Simultaneously, he looks at an unusual timepiece that hangs around his neck.

"I jump up with a start, having never seen a rabbit looking at a watch and talking to himself. Or have I? A vague recollection from my tattered childhood piques my memory ..."

Carey is, of course, dreaming Alice in Wonderland, and throughout the 111 pages of the book, we follow her as she tells the tales of her life as if she were the one down the rabbit hole, not Alice, with a one-act play, a fairy tale about a beautiful young princess, and a handful of Greek goddesses thrown into the mix for variety.
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