Oil for the Wounded
Charlotte Russell Johnson
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Oil for the Wounded is the ninth book in author Charlotte Johnson’s series of motiva-tional text. Dr. Johnson is able to use the met-aphor of a wound and a hurt to clarify the harm of unresolved emotional crisis leaving deep permeating scars in the life of the in-jured. While pain and suffering is a part of the human existence, Dr. Johnson is able to move the reader and those connected to her to a place of acceptance and healing. Pain is una-voidable, but it does not have to be the end of the story, crippling and debilitating the wound-ed. Dr. Johnson is able to provide a fresh, en-tertaining, and refreshing take on what could be a very heavy issue to address. She is able to keep the reader intrigued and laughing so that in the end, they have been educated, helped, empowered and most of all amused by her charming wit and use of anecdotal tales of her family, friends, and associates. The book presents help for recovery in colloquial, non-medical and non-clinical ways reminiscent of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series. It differs in that it is applicable to adap-tation into a professional treatment environ-ment. The level of transparency in this novel has eclipsed the others in this series, which seems impossible, given the very candid na-ture in which Dr. Johnson has unfolded her life story to the world. One of the most notorious characters in the series, Dr. Johnson’s first husband reappears following a five book ab-sence from the series. His long awaited return answers many of the questions that loyal fol-lowers of the series have had about his fate. Although Dr. Johnson has always encouraged her fans not to harbor bitterness of resentment against him, it was difficult for her most devout fans to understand how they were able to maintain a friendship following A Journey to Hell and Back. His character is every bit as complex as Dan Scott in the popular American television series One Tree Hill. An individual capable of diverse and complicated motives and actions, he has always remained devoted to his son although his expression of love is not in the typical manner. He struggled to maintain a connection with his children despite his inappropriate choices. Joe, much like Nathan Scott in OTH, had a different experience and relationship with his father than the siblings who were not in con-sistent contact with him. As Dan Scott exited the series if not redeemed, he was a more hu-mane and likable character; Oil for the Wounded offers the same in-depth analysis into the complexity of Dr. Johnson’s first husband and his efforts to move forward with his family connections although he is not able to completely atone for his past. The universal themes of hurt, pain, re-demption, atonement, sin, weakness, and for-giveness make this book applicable to every-one. Forgiveness is not just offered by the wounded, but by all of those affected by the trauma including those who care for the in-jured party. The feelings of Dr. Johnson’s inti-mate family members are explored in details not observed in her other books.