In Strictest Confidence

A Novel

by Michael J. Canzoniero Ph.D.



Book Details

Language : English
Publication Date : 10/24/2017

Format : Softcover
Dimensions : 6x9
Page Count : 308
ISBN : 9781480848832
Format : Hardcover
Dimensions : 6x9
Page Count : 308
ISBN : 9781480848849
Format : E-Book
Dimensions : N/A
Page Count : 308
ISBN : 9781480848856

About the Book

Disgruntled Detective William Hael had prayed for an interesting case which would bring him out of the depression he had been in since a drunk driver killed his wife and son. He wasn’t sure getting the case of a brutally crucified bisexual school teacher was the answer to his prayer.


Was it a hate crime? Does his friend, the psychologist who has treated all the suspects, really know who the killer is? Will the psychologist be killed next? Is the killer the paranoid schizophrenic? Is he the patient with the antisocial personality disorder? Is the killer the one concealing multiple personalities?


In Strictest Confidence blends a thriller with the psychological study of abused children. In this taut detective tale, the backstories of the suspects and the revelation of Hael’s own difficult childhood elucidate the horrors of child abuse. This novel examines the evolution of emotional disorders in adults who were abused children. Importantly, it discloses how attempts to handle those problems can lead to constructive resolution or to self-destruction.


This psychological thriller brings to mind David Pelzer’s A Child Called “It”, extending that narrative showing abused children as adults with deeply disturbing emotional disorders. While all the characters in this story are fictitious, it is a sad truth that abused children grow into adulthood with a greater likelihood of having mental health disorders. They are more apt to become alcoholics and drug addicts, more at risk for intimate partner violence and, because they are frequently depressed, more disposed to make suicide attempts. All these issues are seen in the characters who enliven this drama.


Reading In Strictest Confidence may evoke the author’s quandary: should being able to understand why someone acts in evil ways make their actions excusable?

About the Author

As a young man living in the Bronx, I witnessed several friends wind their way down the road to drug addition. To help them, I decided to become a psychologist. I earned my doctorate from St. John's University in Queens, New York. As a licensed psychologist, I have expertise in the field of substance abuse. I have worked not only with the adults whose lives were ruined by drugs and alcohol, but also with the children who were physically and/or sexually abused by them. I am passionate about helping people become aware they can break free of their childhood roles, resolve their issues, and liberate themselves to enjoy healthy lives. My wife, Dianne, and I have been married for forty-seven years. We live in Shoreham, on Long Island. I’m the proud father of four adult children, and the happy Papa to my eleven grandchildren. I scuba dive, take photos, play golf, and love the Yankees.