A Goodreads Review:

5 Stars. Nora. Goodreads review.

"This is a fantastic story of coming into oneself where the sheer force of authenticity and honesty shatters all hiding places. Reading “Hatching Charlie” brought me to the edge of the storm. My congratulations and love to Charles McCormack for his perseverance, tenacity and fine, fine authentic work. What a weighted puzzle, what a multi-headed monster, an endless confronting and grappling, which he tells us all about in such fabulously clear and uncompromised language. Thanks a whole lot." 

5 Stars

​Winter Sophia Rose's review
Jun 29, 2017
it was amazing
Intriguing, Powerful, Insightful, Compelling, Fantastic Read! I Loved It!

​​A comment on facebook: 6/23/2017

Janine DuMond Rizzo. "I purchased it in audio formats and I have listened to it twice. It is insightful and well written. Well worth the read! Thank you for your willingness to open your world for others to learn from your journey. I found it inspirational!"

​4.0 out of 5 stars. A book well written laying out a life well lived, and hides nothing. Fantastic.
ByLiterary Titan on June 21, 2017
Format: Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Charles Creath McCormack’s book Hatching Charlie: A Psychotherapist’s Tale is quite a book: a frank autobiography centered around the theme of the pursuit of happiness and a meaningful life, from a man who has sat both on and beside the psychotherapy couch; or as the author himself describes it, “a story of the follies and wisdom’s of the human condition”. Mr. McCormack is fully aware of both the theories and the realities of mental health, although the book contains no technical language at all. It’s an accessible account covering every stage of his life, from his youngest years into his partial retirement. Not to give too much away, but as the imagery of the title implies, his tale starts in darkness, and concludes with a breakthrough, with all the usual human drama of a life lived fully.

I found the style of writing very interesting; it perhaps relates to his experience as a psychotherapist. He makes use of imagery, not frequently, but when he does it’s usually a long, in-depth passage. Thankfully they don’t feel convoluted, because they exemplify his points well.

The imagery adds well to the overall narrative, which is compelling. If I’d had more time, I’d probably have read it in one sitting. Although the author references forward and back to events distant by dozens of years and pages, I was never left feeling confused or lost, so it was neatly accomplished. There was a clear sense of reflection as to what the reader may be thinking, and at points it almost felt like I was part of a conversation. However, I thought that near the end the narrative became a little unfocused, with some unnecessary repetition and description of his family that doesn’t always feel directly related to his main subject – his state of mind.

I want to describe it as a generous story, because I was given extremely honest details about Mr. McCormack’s life that many would have found embarrassing to tell. But he hides no faults or uncomfortable thoughts, and constantly admits when he was wrong. In one chapter the author relates the unfortunate stories of some of his patients. In this way, the book truly covers the full gamut of human experience – warmth, love, friendship, loneliness, unhappiness, violence, despair: life and death.

Despite the author’s wishes that we might take responsibility for our happiness, his book is not a manual for how to obtain it. Observant readers might pluck helpful wisdom from its pages, but this isn’t written as advice – just as he says he does with his patients, he places no obligation on us to try it.

Overall, I would recommend this to any adult reader who is willing to confront life’s uncomfortable truths and those who enjoy a fly-on-the-wall tale of other’s joys and sorrows. I enjoyed trip.

​​​​Erin Daniels rated it 3 stars

liked it
I wanted to love this book but couldn't completely get on board with some of tbe author's choices. I found the racial slurs to be very offensive and I am not sure why the author didn't take this into account. I understand that a memoire requires you to tell the unfiltered truth about the past, even when it's unpleasant, but the author is writing in the present day and some of his language was his own and not quotes from other people. To come across these slurs was shocking, disheartening and too I wanted to love this book but couldn't completely get on board with some of tbe author's choices. I found the racial slurs to be very offensive and I am not sure why the author didn't take this into account. I understand that a memoire requires you to tell the unfiltered truth about the past, even when it's unpleasant, but the author is writing in the present day and some of his language was his own and not quotes from other people. To come across these slurs was shocking, disheartening and took me completely out of the story. That is the real shame because Hatching Charlie was otherwise a fascinating page turner. The author's life was interesting and compelling enough to fill several books in my opinion and his narrative skill is excellent. My only other issue was that the author seems to imply that attitude affects mental outcomes and a conscientious effort to frame unfortunate life events can mitigate emotional harm. I personally feel this mode of thinking is dangerous because it makes people with emotional or psychological imbalances feel that if they're unwell it's because they're looking at things all wrong. So if you're willing to see this book as an engrossing look at one man's fascinating and incredibly interesting life you won't be disappointed.

​[Neil Carstairs]
Jun 09, 2017 Neil Carstairs rated it 4 stars. really liked it
Hatching Charlie is at times a very interesting read, this comes from the engaging way that the author gives voice to his personal history, struggles and successes. It needs to be an honest approach, otherwise it will fail on all fronts. The reader must understand where Charles C McCormack has come from; this includes sometimes difficult to read passages on family life (particularly the young Charlie’s relationship with his father), life in 1950s USA with its racial segregation and subsequent li Hatching Charlie is at times a very interesting read, this comes from the engaging way that the author gives voice to his personal history, struggles and successes. It needs to be an honest approach, otherwise it will fail on all fronts. The reader must understand where Charles C McCormack has come from; this includes sometimes difficult to read passages on family life (particularly the young Charlie’s relationship with his father), life in 1950s USA with its racial segregation and subsequent life in Europe as his father’s military career takes him overseas.

The author’s work in the psychiatric field, something I got the impression he almost fell into by accident, shows the stress that mental health care professionals come under. Dysfunctional families and suicidal patients are encountered daily and the ability to cope with this as well as personal struggles of marriage and divorce earn my respect every time.

Hatching Charlie combines social history with a study of psychoanalysis and McCormack writes with honesty and warmth that will draw the reader in to his life experiences.

4.0 out of 5 stars Speaks to me
By Jay on May 29, 2017
Format: Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
While it was just a sample it was engaging and I ended up buying the book. It is deep and thought provoking

​5.0 out of 5 stars Coming of age tale for a psychotherapist, personally and ...
By K.Thomason May 29, 2017
Format: Paperback
Coming of age tale for a psychotherapist, personally and professionally. Gets a little heavy on the professional side at times but that doesn't mean it's not full of insight, perspective, and the wisdom dropped is not worth reading. Well worth the read and the ride. Definitely.

5.0 out of 5 stars Love and Work
By Margaret Diehlon May 13, 2017
Format: Kindle Edition
I edited this book so have a bias, but I can honestly say it’s been one of my favorite editing projects. Having spent many years in therapy and read countless psychology books—the kind written for other psychologists—I recognized a lot of what Charlie was talking about and was fascinated by how his professional experience was juxtaposed with the personal stories we all have: childhood happiness and unhappiness, the confusions of youth, falling in love, career, children, aging. Anyone with a serious interest in the human psyche has done this kind of work—looked at their lives, both what was given and what was chosen, and asked What are the patterns? What did I do and why? He's known enough of love, loneliness and grief to speak to what is universal in the human condition. He's also a vivid and engaging writer, bringing scenes and characters to life with warmth and wit. Anyone who has wondered what an analyst brings into--or takes out of--his consulting room will find this memoir of interest. It also has the virtue of being very specific about mental health theories and circumstance of the last forty years, particularly in regard to marriage and family therapy.

5.0 out of 5 stars
A poignant psychotherapist's journey
By Randi K on March 19, 2017
Format: Paperback

Hatching Charlie is the story of evolution. It describes the evolution of a boy to a man, a child to a parent, a wild teenager into a responsible adult. It is also a story of the evolving awareness that psychic pain can be healed. And, while most people look to another for that healing, this autobiography reminds the reader that relationships with others are only part of the story. In fact, true growth and healing comes from knowing how to forgive and then accept the self, and Charles McCormack’s journey helps the reader learn this in a gentle but powerful way.
Hatching Charlie is a brave book. For a therapist, still seeing patients, to reveal so much of his own pain and suffering takes guts. Opening oneself to this much vulnerability means that the author has found a way to look at himself without shame. This book, therefore, becomes a roadmap for others who suffer, providing hope and insight that someone else might work through their traumas too. So, while the book serves as a memoir and as a source of healing to Charles McCormack, it is also a way for him to continue counseling others. It becomes clear that his search for happiness is universal, and that his journey is in fact our journey too. He teaches us valuable lessons; that we cannot rely solely on someone else to meet our needs, that happiness isn’t necessarily a constant, and that it is possible to look back on our lives with fondness, even if there was pain there too. I think this is a must read for anyone whose childhood was less than perfect, with imperfect parents and difficult circumstances. And, since most of us had at least some obstacles to face during our lives, this book is meant for everyone.

​​5.0 out of 5 stars  We can all relate...
By PATRICIA L ALFIN, psychotherapist, retired.on January 4, 2017
Format: Kindle Edition

If you've ever wanted to read someone's diary, be a fly on the wall during a private exchange, or wondered what someone, possibly your therapist, really, really thinks, then Hatching Charlie will roundly satisfy that curiosity. It's a fascinating read if you just leave it at that, but, in doing so you'd miss a rare invitation to be guided through elements of your own personal story on a parallel plane.
Charlie's story is Everyman's story, incorporated within his unique personal journey; a story written with courageous and generous transparency, serving to anchor and hold his emerging sense of self while facilitating the reader's understanding of our shared universal affliction.
Author McCormack's synthesis and summary of the psychoanalytic field's theories of human development and interpersonal dynamics is a gift in itself to lay readers and clinicians alike.
Written with humor, humility, clinical expertise and a loving respect for life and the human condition, Hatching Charlie heroically breaks new ground in the autobiography genre.

​Readers' Reviews: Hatching Charlie

5.0 out of 5 stars. Charlie has hatched
By Justin on July 7, 2017
Format: Paperback|Verified Purchase
I'll start off by saying I know the man behind the book. Although, not as much as I thought I did after completing it. This is an interesting look into the life and mind of Charles McCormack; and it's one that I found myself wanting to read (or listen, as I used mostly the audio book) "just a bit more" because it was so engaging. It evokes a myriad of emotions that most people, on some level I believe, can relate to. You may not have lived through what he has, but the book is put forth in a way that you can relate pieces to your own life, as anyone who has had the struggles of life thrust upon them. As long as you're open to the realities of life, warts and all, I believe you'll find the life story of Charles interesting. He may not have the desire to sugar coat the harshness of his life, whether it be brash words or descriptive depictions of what he went through from child to man, but you'll get an honest account from his point of view.

[5.0 out of 5 stars] This is a book I knew I would enjoy simply from the title alone, June 22, 2017
Joseph Willson
This review is from: Hatching Charlie: A Psychotherapist's Tale (Kindle Edition)
This is a book I knew I would enjoy simply from the title alone. Even considering I had no idea of what the content would be yet, before reading the excerpt, simply from the title alone I was aware I would gain inspiration from this book.
And this I certainly did, much much more than I could have ever imagined.
This is a wonderfully presented autobiographical account of a mans life from every possible angle one can imagine. Good, bad and just plain middle of the road stuff that each and every person goes through in their own lives and their own respective fashions. Most, as is related in the book countless times, without any such knowledge of what they are experiencing or why.
Simply stated the average individual does not look at themselves in such a light as to discover within themselves how to become a better, richer and fuller person by way of self-exploration and really, self-renewal throughout their lives.
Written in a very self-deprecating yet humorous tome, it comes apparent quickly that the author has fully left himself vulnerable to the world with no concern whatever to what may come. And why should he? I guess you'll need to read the book to arrive at that answer for yourself.
The knowledge I have gained is enormous. Being on my own journey of self-exploration for the last three years or so I found this book so relate-able to so many questions and ideas and theories I myself have come up with. Why is it my life is the way it is? Why have I come to this place in my life? Why I should continue this re-examination of all things that are my life... and how shall I continue along this road? Is this all there is? I am the only person that can answer these questions fully and completely.
Personally I have been able to use this as a self-help tool even though I do not believe that was the author's intent.
Written in an narrative that I found quite compelling and witty. The analogies abounded to his experiences and were so eloquent in their placements it was a joy to read.
I am going to recommend this to my own counselor and life coach among many others.

Jun 08, 2017 J.B. Trepagnier rated it 3 stars liked it
This is overall, a good tale about overcoming a hard childhood that ranged from an abusive father and never putting down roots from moving around often and eventually finding your place in the world and your own happiness. You read the author's struggles from boyhood to adulthood, finding relationships, ending relationships, and having children.

I think the one thing that turned me off a little was some of the racial language in the book early on. Words like coloreds get used often and the N word This is overall, a good tale about overcoming a hard childhood that ranged from an abusive father and never putting down roots from moving around often and eventually finding your place in the world and your own happiness. You read the author's struggles from boyhood to adulthood, finding relationships, ending relationships, and having children.

I think the one thing that turned me off a little was some of the racial language in the book early on. Words like coloreds get used often and the N word is used at least once. There was a joke in there that may have been a personal inside joke among the family that his African American son in law was "whiter than he was", but there was no context to it that it was an inside joke and it could have been taken wrong, which I did a little. While I understand this was what the language the author knew when he was at the age, I might have felt differently if those chapters have been told with say, a 6-8 year old narrators voice that doesn't know better. The entire book is read from the perspective of a psychotherapist analyzing their past and childhood. So the voice that is using those terms is a grown man, not a young boy who only knows those terms. Maybe i took it the wrong way, but I'm mixed race and live in an area where people sometimes do use those terms to cause harm and they are just hot button words to me.

​​​5.0 out of 5 stars  None Like It
ByKristina C MacGaffinon May 2, 2017
Format: Paperback
Memoir, cautionary tale, reflections on the life and work of a psychologist as authentic human being, on hate, love, marriage, and high humor,

Hatching Charlie unfolds a path to a lifetime of growth. With grit and determination and a large heart,this successful author of many papers and books, takes us on a journey of everyone's challenge, but only if we can face the truth straight on. We discover his struggle to understand the complexity, both personal and professional, of living fully as child, adolescent, man, psychotherapist, husband and father. We see through the lens of his pen the challenges of one man to live life fully, to the hilt, and never give up. He learns through his wrestling match with life
to ultimately turn inward to his soul for the answers he seeks, and he brings these triumphs to his patients and his friends. This is a unique book in its naked honesty, raw struggle, and saving humor. When one can do all this, persistently, the path he tells us, becomes wiser, deeper, softer, and warmed with gratitude to all those who partnered him along the way, the whole way.

​​5.0 out of 5 stars  Take the Journey with Charlie!
By Rose Selavy on February 11, 2017
Format: Kindle Edition

Sitting (or lying down) in your therapist's office and revealing the thorniest problems closest to your heart, did you ever wonder about the personal travails of the other person in the room? This book will take you on the life trajectory of one talented psychotherapist, who with candor, humor, spice, and great self-reflection tells how he "hatched" himself to find his professional calling, after many detours that could have meant a permanent derailing. He also reveals his own personal relationship struggles in the universal attempt to find love. In so doing, he offers hope to us all when we flounder and can't, for the moment, see a clear and promising path forward.
He generously shares the details of a psychologically lonely youth of disrupted attachments due to constant moving and the brutality of a narcissistic father. We agonize with him through an excruciating banishment, at 11years old, to a boarding school in France where sadism seemed to be the guiding principle of both students and masters alike. He portrays, through the lens of his own hard-won experience, the scars and challenges created in soldiering through childhood alone. In this way, he connects the dots to his adult life and empathizes with all of us humans who, more or less, must pass through from childhood to adult and find our own individual way.
It is an inspiring memoir about how one person grappled with fear and isolation, and through the alchemy of psychoanalysis and self-understanding, forged a far more gratifying adult pathway. Sharing his experiences as a therapist on an in-patient, long-term psychiatric unit is fascinating, as these types of units barely exist any longer due to the predations of managed care. Along with Charlie, we share his anger and frustration about how patient care, which used to provide asylum and sanctuary for as long as needed, now is solely about the insurance company's bottom line, not the patient. He clearly outlines how this current system injects massive doses of anxiety into already anxious and troubled people, by necessitating repeated requests for care and frequently denying it.
For anyone desiring to be touched by one individual's journey in wrangling with the great questions of life, in the hope some of your own might be illuminated, this is a wonderful and wise book.

​​​​​5.0 out of 5 stars  Great read
By John Mahlmann, Ph.D.on January 13, 2017
Format: Paperback

Hatching Charlie is the entertaining autobiography of a seasoned psychotherapist offering uninhibited honesty, self-analysis and insight. In his trip down memory lane, he brings to life the relationships that have informed his being.
From his well-seasoned psychoanalytic and psycho-dynamic viewpoint, Charlie’s early years serve as a foundation for the connective thread that resonates throughout his life-story. The personal and professional candor that leaves him so vulnerable throughout the manuscript serves as the scaffolding for the well-deserved contentment of his twilight years.
Hatching Charlie provides more than an entertaining and informed retrospective; it provides a template for looking backwards, in the moment and into the future. Those with an introspective nature will be well served to consider using his self-analysis to help inform their own.

​5.0 out of 5 stars  A life journey we can all relate to
By Barb Von February 13, 2017
Format: Paperback

Charlie has written a very detailed tale of his life journey. He writes of failures, losses, happiness and many other emotions. Tells us about his marriages and family life and having children. Charlie has not only written his life story that bears his soul, but one that each reader can relate to in their own life. I highly recommend Hatching Charlie

5.0 out of 5 stars  Not your usual Travel journal (what a plus!)
By LJZ on January 9, 2017
Format: Paperback|Verified Purchase

From the onset, this book is emotionally charged as it draws one into Charlie's chaotic childhood to the depths of his loneliness and despair. The words are vibrant in content so much so to allow the reader to visualize the sights and sounds of that childhood, while simultaneously feeling the anguish, fear, uncertainty and desperation. As you loathe his parents, silently measure them to your own with their shortcomings and/or strengths. Charlie's tale continues through teen years and early adulthood -- a flawed but intriguing man emerges, though still "unhatched", full of wit, whimsy and occasional wisdom, taking what may be perceived as risks, and learning from the insights of strangers and friendships. Years pass... providing Charlie opportunities and challenges in his work, relationships, life itself. As the book comes to its close, we know we have joined Charlie on his journey--but have learned just as much about who we are too. And though our experiences are vastly different, in the end, a common core of family, enjoying nature, time for self, and reflection, make all of our worlds more alike than not.

5.0 out of 5 stars   Easy reading and humorous at times
By  G. thomas on February 18, 2017
Format: Paperback|Verified Purchase

Wow!!! Easy reading and humorous at times, Hatching Charlie is written with bare bone honesty and causes you to pause and reflect on specific times and events in your personal life that over years has caused your emotional responses to either affirm or challenge your values and beliefs that have led your emotions to either harm yourself or honor your being.
This is a book that clearly reminds each of us that others have experience anger, pain and at times shame, yet with much self examination and acceptance of our responsibility for our own actions, we can grow beyond the shell and find true peace, happiness and joy.

​5.0 out of 5 stars  Hatching Charlie is an inspirational view into the personal and ...
By Amazon Customer Carol Finlayson on January 30, 2017
Format: Paperback

Hatching Charlie is an inspirational view into the personal and professional character forming events in the life of psychotherapist Charles McCormack as he explores and examines his past. McCormack digs deep and exposes childhood mistreatment and abandonment while exploring the complexities of relationships with parents, siblings, wives, children and grandchildren. Throughout Hatching Charlie, McCormack strives to make meaning of it all. An endorsement for integrity and honesty to oneself. Kudos for the courage to share this deeply personal hatching.

Great Book: be ready for an honest account of one man's life/point of view
By Ms. Tee on July 13, 2017
Format: Audible Audio Edition
I read this book not sure of what to expect. The author is very honest and genuine from beginning to end about why he wrote the book, who he wrote the book for, his personal experiences and the experiences of others. There is no filter with this book. This is a blunt account of one man's journey to realizing who he is and how he became that way as well as how he wants to continue to grow. I enjoyed the fact that this psychotherapist did his research and sited many other psychoanalyst's in his work. It is always a joy to read non fiction but to know that he took his time and did research and included other peoples input in his book.
My favorite part of this book was the shout outs though. They were personal and awesome to read.

5.0 out of 5 stars. Looking For A Good read!?
By Jacques E. McCormack on July 12, 2017
Format: Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Full disclosure. I am Jacques, Charlie’s slightly older brother referred to glowingly, and sometimes not so glowingly, in portions of his work.

Having finished “Hatching Charlie” and having put it down, I had the undeniable sensation that somehow that nemesis of my youth had had me miniaturized and placed on his shoulder and, following that, had the audacity to suggest that we set out together to reconnoiter his life experiences. Frankly, not an overly compelling proposition. We had, after all, shared a nontrivial portion of those same experiences so it would be like seeing a rerun wouldn't it? Not on your life!

What a trip it was! Yes, there were times as he chronicled the past that I found myself saying “wait a minute! I don't remember it that way!” or maybe “Give me a break, aren't you being a tad overly dramatic!?”.

That said, with me ensconced firmly on his shoulder, our journey progressed and …. my protestations waned. This because it did not take long to appreciate and admire the honesty and passion that Charlie brought to the task of informing, challenging and entertaining his reader. Because of those traits many well remembered scenes passed before my eyes, but for the first time I was seeing them through my brother’s. Quite an experience.

Well, having finished “Hatching Charlie” I wanted to report that event to him. The subject line of the email was simply “Wow!” and my note read:

Klaus (family nickname),

Over dinner tonight, at one of my go to local restaurants, I finished Hatching. What a great read. I enjoyed it, learned from it, critiqued it ... all on multiple levels, but most importantly I appreciated it. Beautifully written (e.g. I read the ending three times) and honest beyond belief! Really very well done and for what it is worth I couldn't be more proud of you!
Lisbon, Portugal

5.0 out of 5 stars. Thoughtful read
By Michelle Zentmyeron July 9, 2017
Format: Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The writing lets you hear the writer's voice. You feel like you are in an intimate conversation with him. I know Charlie personally and felt his presence as I read. His writing allows you to have your own emotion to his story. His insights are the kind you want to take with you.

Jun 04, 2017 Wendy rated it 5 stars.

it was amazing
Recommended to Wendy by: Goodreads Giveaways
Shelves: memoir
A fascinating memoir which I won through Goodreads Giveaways is “Hatching Charlie: A Psychotherapist’s Tale” which traces Charles C. MacCormack’s journey from the “scars and challenges” of his youth through his struggle to find love in his personal relationships as an adult, to his enlightenment and purpose in a career as a psychotherapist.

Divided into four parts from the factors that contributed to his darkness, confusion and despair in his youth; to making sense of them; hatching from his past and finding purpose in his studies in psychoanalysis; to discovering a sense of fulfillment and wisdom as well as returning kindness and care to himself, the author through his personal exploration attempts to pass on his understanding and life-knowledge to others disheartened by the bumps in their lives.

Resonating with humor and compassion, “Hatching Charlie: A Psychotherapist’s Tale” is a wonderfully captivating experience watching Charlie’s perseverance and stubborn-will overcome his stumbling and lack of direction to emerge as an in-patient therapist in a long-term psychiatric unit. I rate it highly and won’t hesitate to add it to the collection at my local library.

5.0 out of 5 stars  A thoughtful, deeply insightful and humorous book filled with wisdom and relational truth
By Michael D. Zentman on May 3, 2017
Format: Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
McCormack has written a thoughtful, deeply insightful and humorous book filled with wisdom and relational truth. He brings you not only into his own mind​, but also into the world he lived in, as a child and as an adult. With his gift for word play and powerful imagery McCormack eloquently captures the depth of the inner experience of being in psychoanalytic treatment. I have not read a more open and honest accounting of the difficult but worthwhile journey to extricate oneself from "a self-limiting life."

4.0 out of 5 stars A self-analysis of a man's life and the challenges he faced in breaking through the layers of developmental achievement.
By Amazon Customer on February 21, 2017
Format: Paperback

"Hatching Charlie", in my opinion was the story of one man's quest to derive the highest level of quality out of his life experience. The author's use of words enabled the reader to "feel" the experience and to live in that moment in time with him. The analogy of "breaking through" was the repetitive theme and deep insight was given at each stage of developmental achievement. The book inspired and challenged me to question myself in terms of unrealistic expectations of what life has to offer as well as what motivates us in our relationships and interactions with others.
The author, a psychotherapist, turns his intuitive abilities and the tools of his profession inward, giving the reader a very unique perspective of his life's journey. I thoroughly enjoyed the book and walked away with "food for thought"!

​4.0 out of 5 stars  Out on a Limb
By  Amazon Customeron February 10, 2017
Format: Paperback|Verified Purchase

I loved the first four chapters. After that it was too much family for me. I felt he had already hatched....

​A review of Charlie McCormack's Hatching Charlie
By Sharon Alperovitz on January 14, 2017
Format: Paperback|Verified Purchase
Charlie McCormack has written a tale for all of us who are interested in being and staying alive in life and to life. His writing is accessible and pulls you in immediately. He shares his ups and downs and the wisdom he has gain all along - and it is done in a down to earth, style that makes it feel like you are with a cherished friend. I recommend it highly - I feel sure, like myself, that you will learn something important for your own life's journey. Sharon Alperovitz

​​​5.0 out of 5 stars Breaking the Curvilinear Barrier.
By Kigabee on December 26, 2016
Format: Kindle Edition

Climb aboard Charlie’s magical couch—have a beer, probably Freudian Stout—and enjoy the psychoanalytical ride of your life. Lay back and get into his mind; meet his wives, lovers, friends, co-workers, demons, children, and peers; share his accomplishments and failures; hopes and fears: a story of pain, joy, and self-discovery that unfolds with a clarity that few can match. Perhaps he should be committed.

No, that is the sort of joke only a friend can make. We were lifeguards together on a Maryland ocean beach, where he sort of saved me, once. I also worked in the mental health field at the Presidio, US Army—so I appreciate the challenges, accomplishments, and likely egg-tooth he was born with that enabled him to never quit, to emerge and finally take flight in that most personal of professions—psychotherapy.

To some, his journey may seem unconventional—a free-associative, flight-of-fancy, over the years, that necessitated the conquering of many hurdles, some of his own making, others the foible finger of fate—a military father failing to confront his own demons.

Nevertheless, with Charlie’s creative, inquisitive, expressive, and imaginative mind, I believe his writing will firmly garner him a place in medical history as the Oscar Wilde of Psychotherapy—his story unfolds like beautiful Salome’s (Wilde’s tragic play and more recent Tom Robbins’ novel) in which a dancer peels off each of her seven veils, until she is wearing little or nothing. As each veil drops, she comes to an epiphany about life.

In a way, Charlie’s story reads like a well-performed strip-tease—the sequined reflections of his fifty-year psychotherapeutic voyage take the reader through a kaleidoscopic journey into the sacred and profane, past many blessed and tortured realms, and eventual rapprochement with his “self”—family, wisdom, peace, transparency, and a final boat ride.

Rarely has the mental health realm been presented with such serious and yet irreverent, humane, and honest treatment. Through it all, Charlie perseveres, renews and rejoices; is true to himself, his patients and family. For anyone who wants to understand the challenges, rewards, and sometimes tragedies inherent in a mental health career, I cannot imagine a more revealing story.

Perhaps, regarding Charlie’s legacy, Oscar Wilde is again worthy of mention. His tomb, constructed in Père Lachaise Cemetery, Paris, France, is engraved with a verse from the Ballad of Reading Gaol by Wilde bequeathed to outcast men:

And alien tears will fill for him
Pity’s long-broken urn,
For his mourners will be outcast men,
And outcasts always mourn.

Unless, of course, they hop in the boat and head into the blue, their minds returning to the sea.

​5.0 out of 5 stars  More than just a good book
By Experienced Amazon Shopper on January 10, 2017
Format: Paperback|Verified Purchase

“Hatching Charlie” could very well be less concisely titled “Finding and Living a Good Life.” What Charles McCormack has done is laid bare his soul in a way that connects reader to him, and more importantly, him to himself. In a fabulous retrospective of his younger years, you can see how every moment from birth through marriage clearly drove him to the profession he loves, psychotherapy. And it is within this milieu that he shines as not only a therapist but as a down-to-earth human being. Plenty of stories highlight the ups and downs of his personal and professional lives, and how each impacts the other. Each vignette melds with the next to give us a more complete picture of what may seem like a fragmented life. But I'm reminded of Norman Lear's adage, that we all live many different lives in many different eras; as McCormack has entered new phases, he does his best to improve in each life. Through it all, he reminds us that we are also humans, living our own narratives amongst the millions of others around us.
McCormack's review of how he learned (and honestly continues to learn!) to choose happiness over dread, contentedness over ostentatious thrills, peace over the demons of his youth, is a lesson to all of us. Every time he relates a story of discovering something new about himself is also a connection, a calling, to each of us to do the same. As he has opted to quell the impulsiveness in himself for a quieter happiness, he urges us to do the same. And as his mother urged, the take-home message is clear: “Have a good life.”

5.0 star rating. Goodreads.com

" i won this book recently in a Goodreads First Reads giveaway.
This was interesting and something totally different from what I usually read. I rarely write what a book is about for fear of spoiling for others, but I do recommend. " — Alan Brown
Hatching Charlie: A Psychotherapist's Tale
by Charles C. McCormack (Goodreads Author)
[Hatching Charlie by Charles C. McCormack]

4.0 star review: Goodreads.com.  really liked it
" Interesting memoir giving incite into life's realities. I won this book in a Goodreads giveaway. " — Catherine Lewis
Hatching Charlie: A Psychotherapist's Tale
by Charles C. McCormack (Goodreads)

​5.0 out of 5 stars  “If my devils are to leave me, I am afraid my angels will take flight as well” Rilke
By Diane Pomerantz, PhDon January 27, 2017
Format: Paperback|Verified Purchase

While with these words, the poet Rilke rejected psychoanalysis, Charles McCormack does the opposite. In his memoir, Hatching Charlie: A Psychotherapist's Tale, the author, from an insight-oriented perspective, with skill and nuance, demonstrates how his angels and his devils are inextricably interwoven.
Throughout this deeply resonating work, the author demonstrates with sensitivity and wit, and without jargon, his own life journey and the painful process of disentangling his own devils and angels and ultimately accepting that both exist. Through his own experiences, he discovers at a meaningful level that he himself has the ultimate choice and responsibility for his own happiness.
Only someone who has traveled this road himself and participated in the journey with others along the road, could tell this story of the universal human condition.

5.0 out of 5 stars "If I'd known life was so short, I would have paid more attention."
By MD/Psychologist on March 13, 2017
Format: Paperback

This memoir oscillates from wrenching to rollicking to painfully and refreshingly contemplative: A very fallible mother who evolves; a feckless, Great Santini father who doesn't evolve; early encounters with racism and his own sadism; a harrowing French boarding school; road trips/alcohol/drugs/wannabe scofflaw; aloneness; the loves of his life, including children and grandchildren; his own psychotherapy and his eventual decision to become a psychotherapist; years of upgrading his aspirations, sophistication and self-observation despite acutely distressing anxiety and imposterism about public speaking and writing; finding his place as a non-physician in a physician-ruled psychiatric hospital; the "absolute bastards" of 1980-90's "managed care" (Oh, I remember them well, too.); the grueling/gratifying attachments in psychotherapy with very difficult patients and families; traumatizing suicides of patients; and, finally, finding himself both in relationships and in his own skin. It is an extended and well articulated hatching of a real grown up who is capable of love, self-examination and relative contentment both despite and because of his beginnings. I started this book without enthusiasm, not sure I'd finish, but am very glad I stuck with it.

​​5.0 out of 5 stars  A journey worth taking
By Donna Burns on January 12, 2017
Format: Paperback

This book was a Buffet. It was witty, insightful, encouraging, adventurous, educational, and at times heart wrenching.
I became invested in the author and how he dealt with his trials and how he used them to grow. There was a section in the book that I wanted to reach into the past and grab little Charlie from the emotional & physical abuse.
This book is definitely a good read. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

5.0 out of 5 stars Read it!
By Amazon Customer on March 19, 2017
Format: Paperback

I compare Hatching Charlie: A Psychotherapist's Tale by Charles McCormack to Hillbilly Elegy: A memoir of a Family and Culture in Crises by J.D. Vance. Both are insightful and take the reader on a journey of life's pains and joys and teach lessons about mourning the past while living in the present. As a psychologist who has had the privilege to be to be invited into peoples inner lives, I found McCormack's story one I would recommend to patients as well as friends and colleagues. His story is a testament to the importance of attending to one's inner world in order to have a fuller life. Read it!