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1. Surviving Manic Depression: A
2. The Depression Workbook: A Guide
3. Manic Depression and Creativity
4. Living Without Depression and
5. A Brotherhood of Tyrants: Manic
6. Manic-Depressive Illness: Bipolar
7. Manic Depression: How to Live
8. Mind Gone Awry - A Bipolar Recovery
9. As I Am: Living in Acceptance
10. Is it Weird in Here or is it Just
11. Agents in My Brain: How I Survived
12. The Marriage of Heaven and Hell:
13. Neural Misfire: A True Story of
14. Adventures in Bipolarland: ~a
15. Bipolar Balancing Act: Journeying
16. A Can of Madness: Memoir on bipolar
17. The Key to Genius/Manic-Depression
18. A Blur of Mass Motion: Reaching
19. New Hope for People with Bipolar
20. Manic-Depression: Illness or Awakening

1. Surviving Manic Depression: A Manual on Bipolar Disorder for Patients, Families, and Providers
by E. Fuller TorreyM.D., Michael B. KnableD.O.
Paperback: 432 Pages (2005-03-02)
list price: US$19.95 -- used & new: US$4.25
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0465086640
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
Surviving Manic Depression is the most comprehensive, up-to-date book on the disorder that affects more than two million people in the United States alone. Based on the latest research, it provides detailed coverage of every aspect of the disorder.

All aspects of the disease are addressed: symptoms, with many direct descriptions from patients themselves, risk factors, onset and cause, medications (including drugs still in the testing stage), causes, psychotherapy, and rehabilitation and how the disease affects children and adolescents. Here too are discussions of special problems related to manic-depressive disorder, including alcohol and drug abuse, violent behavior, medication noncompliance, suicide, sex, AIDS, and confidentiality. Surviving Manic Depression also includes special features such as a listing of selected websites, videotapes, and other resources.Amazon.com Review
If knowing one's enemy is key to surviving a prolonged encounter, then Surviving Manic Depression should prove essential reading to those who suffer from this brain disease's horrific highs and lows. Having immersed themselves in the topic, E. Fuller Torrey, M.D., and Michael B. Knable, D.O., offer a comprehensive resource for those afflicted with--or responsible for treating--manic depression. Unfortunately, a surprisingly small amount of data exists regarding its prevalence, and existing studies show conflicting results.

Torrey and Knable's emphasis on dissecting all that is known about the disease clearly indicates that "survival" entails neither escape nor eradication; rather, it requires a lifelong pledge to undertake an effective course of treatment. The first step: learning every suspected cause, symptom, risk factor, and treatment strategy. Sprinkled among statistic-laden paragraphs, touches of empathy arrive via articulate quotations from sufferers including Patty Duke and Kay Jamison. But the crux of Torrey and Knable's work is its compilation of all the informative bits and pieces readers need to build an effective action plan. Most helpful are the chapters that address special problems (including alcohol and drug abuse, violent behavior, medication noncompliance, and the seduction of mania); and their no-holds-barred reviews of books, selected Web sites, and videotapes. --Liane Thomas ... Read more

Customer Reviews (27)

5-0 out of 5 stars Best I've found to help patients and families
This is the best resource for patients and their families. It is a "must read" for anyone involved with the complicated MH field. I have loaned mine out numerous times and the person usually ends up buying their own copy. It's a no nonsense informative book that allows people to read the many aspects of the disease. Dr. Torrey is an excellant advocate for families and patients. It gives suggestions tofamilies when their loved one is having trouble. If hospitalization is involved Torrey introduces the patient and family with many options they could explore. There is a section that includes websites and other resources which give support, advocacy and not to forget; the continual updates on the disease. I've worked in the MH field for many years and it is one book I constantly go back to for guidance.This book not only provides information it gives encouragement and hope. That is the most important message of all: there is hope.

5-0 out of 5 stars Surviving manic depression
Arrived quickly and in great shape. Will be a good resource book for work I do.

3-0 out of 5 stars Survival guide for bipolar
All of that information I already obtain throu the Internet saits. The book was nothing to do about reality of surviving-only main information about desease and main information (very old, thouh, it is another level of medicine already exist , for exsample, abilify). Nothing new for me, mother of bipolar child, who declines her medical help. Again, nothing about SURVIVING. Sorry, Natalia Seregin.

4-0 out of 5 stars Manual on Bipolar Disorder
This is a really helpful book. Great for trying to learn about this disorder and being supportive. Also very good for helping yourself understand better what's going on with your loved one with this disorder. Very, very good book. The other reviews were extremely helpful in my decision to buy this book.

3-0 out of 5 stars Not so fun to read but some good information
Although there is a lot of good information in this book, getting beyond the first chapter is a challenge.When you begin reading, there is no engaging narrative style, just a series of subtitles with factual information underneath.If you are like me, this isn't the first information you are looking for...statistics on how many people have the disease (depends upon when and how you define it)...statistics on how many people are being treated in urban vs. rural settings...To make a long story short, this book does not grab you at all.You have to push through, as if you were reading an academic paper, to get information.There are no uplifting case histories referred to throughout the book that keep you interested (cases mentioned are usually one or two paragraph examples).Nor are there any new theories presented here - just a disjointed summary of the (disappointing) research that has been done thus far.The medication section is not up to date, since there was no mention of Lamictal as a treatment.I bought this book because of the good review here on Amazon, and was somewhat disappointed, so I felt compelled to add me own feelings for the benefit of those who might do the same. ... Read more

2. The Depression Workbook: A Guide for Living with Depression and Manic Depression, Second Edition
by Mary Ellen Copeland, Matthew McKay
Paperback: 334 Pages (2002-01-09)
list price: US$24.95 -- used & new: US$14.42
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 157224268X
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
This bestselling workbook provides interactive exercises that help readers take responsibility for their own wellness and teach essential coping skills, such as tracking and controlling moods, building a support system, increasing self-confidence and self-esteem, avoiding conditions that can exacerbate mood swings, and using relaxation, diet, and exercise to stabilize moods.A major feature of the second edition is a new chapter that details a step-by-step process to help readers develop their own plan for managing symptoms and staying well. The second edition also contains an updated list of resources, including an extensive list of helpful web resources, as well as expanded material on specific treatment strategies and updated resources for mental health professionals.Amazon.com Review
It may be difficult for those suffering from depression to add a little work into their day; simply getting out of bed can seem like plenty of work. But if you are newly diagnosed or experiencing moderate problems with depression or bipolar disorder, The Depression Workbook might be a literal lifesaver.

The first section is especially useful to new patients just learning to navigate the signs, treatments, and vocabulary of depression. Clearly written overviews of specific symptoms are coupled with space for you to write in your own thoughts on treatment, prognosis, and your ultimate goals. Checklists and daily planners help to identify both areas of difficulty and positive experiences; later in the book, you'll find charts for tracking medications, diet, and doctor visits.

A full section is devoted to the establishment and maintenance of a support group. Ideas range from open discussions with family members to seeking out volunteer work, and it's this section that may be the trickiest for the depressed to work through. Finding the strength to make new friends may seem impossible at first, but author Mary Ellen Copeland spreads plenty of warmth, encouragement, and personal experience among her directives. --Jill Lightner ... Read more

Customer Reviews (26)

5-0 out of 5 stars Hope and Help for people with emotional illnesses

I have purchased three copies of this book; one for myself and two for others with similar experiences. Reading it helped me to identify my own psychological condition and even better, showed me practical and realistic ways to feel better. It helped in my receiving a correct diagnosis and being prescribed medicine that is daily helping me to have a confident and enjoyable life. The list of recommended resources is sure to be helpful to anyone willing to take action to be mentally healthy.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great book
It is a wonderful book to help those individuals who have depression understand how to control it and to learn more about their disability. Manic depression is classified as bi-polar so those who have bi-polar may want to check this book out as well.

3-0 out of 5 stars Non bi-polars beware
This is a great book but I found that it was suited more for people with bi-polar issues or manic issues.In addition, if done alone at home, it can bring up some really difficult issues.I think this is great to use in a group setting or in a partial or full hospital program, but I found it to bring up too many emotions and prefer to use it in group settings only.

3-0 out of 5 stars Somewhat helpful
I found that this book was heavily skewed to bipolar depression.While the information and exercises given are no doubt helpful to those with bipolar depression, I found that they did not really pertain to my unipolar (postpartum) depression.I would look for different resources if you are suffering from unipolar depression.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Help for Depression
Depression is a horrible illness that I would not have survived if it were not for books like this one.I researched and sought information endlessly when in the black hole of this horrible illness.This book provides resources and information that is necessary for anyone suffering from depression or those working with the suffering individuals.Always remember there is help and its not as bad as it seems.Depression is an illness that effects your entire being so treatment is necessary.You cant just shake it off.This book helps.

Definitely recommended for the depressed and those working with these individuals. ... Read more

3. Manic Depression and Creativity
by D. Jablow Hershman, Julian Lieb
Paperback: 230 Pages (1998-08)
list price: US$24.98 -- used & new: US$15.13
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1573922412
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
From Plato, who originated the idea of inspired mania, to Beethoven, Dickens, Newton, Van Gogh, and today's popular creative artists and scientists who've battled manic depression, this intriguing work examines creativity and madness in mystery, myth, and history. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (9)

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent combination of history and clinical review
I really enjoyed this book, and it definitely reinforced the "gifted" spin on my bipolar diagnosis, although I realize it doesn't make us all Beethovens and Van Goghs.

The vivid picture painted in the life cycles of these brilliant artists is both informative and compelling.

The only case in which I remained unconvinced of the diagnosis was Newton.I'd love to be in his company, but I just didn't see the same behavioral patterns as were evident in the artists covered.

I will recommend this book to anyone who has been recently diagnosed as bipolar.I think it will help.

The review that suggested the book was lacking in tact left me scratching my head.On the contrary:I found the accounts quite sensitive.

1-0 out of 5 stars What was that all about?
I ordered the book.I paid for the book.I learned the place that was to sell me the book didn't have the book.I was given a credit for my order.

I guess I could have gone through Amazon again to order the book.I wonder how many times I would have had to do that to find someone listed who actually had the book to sell me.

Instead, I walked into a book store.I ordered the book.They gave me a discount coupon.I paid for a new copy of the book.It was less than the used copy I had tried to buy on Amazon.They mailed it to my house.There was no postal fee.

End of story.

5-0 out of 5 stars Very Satisfied
The book came quickly and was in the condition I expected it to be. Very pleased.

4-0 out of 5 stars Informative
I found the information contained in the front section of the book to be disturbing in that what I believed to be personality traits are instead bundles of pathology.This is probably because I have bipolar and I thought that the positive features of my life were things that I chose to happen.Not so....

I was disappointed in the paucity of citations, creating difficulty in determining what statements were the opinion of the authors' or statements that were supported by other authors or research.The bibliography was disappointing.I found the Jamison book on creativity to be much more thourough.

All that aside, I like reading it.

5-0 out of 5 stars 1 of the BEST books on Manic Depression
By far, this is one of the best books I've read on manic depression. I should know -I'm a PhD-MD cannidate at the university that is the brother school to the college (sister school) I attended- (Ivy L, 7 Sisters, CT, MA -figure it out...;)- in psychiatric medicine, focusing on mood disorders and substance abuse. I'm also a person living with Bipolar I and who is sick and tired of everyone yapping about Bipolar Illness and not doing much research on it (which is pointed out at the very end of the book.) However, this book is a refreshing surprise in a sea of far too many "I have BP disorder, read MY book b/c I'll tell YOU how to survive!!!" narratives.
First, it begins with an overview of what manic-depression is; all of it's various components , thus pointing out how 2 different people can be classified as being Bipolar I or II and present entirely different symptoms of the illness, yet these symptoms are what classfies them as a persons who suffer from the same classification of the disease (BP I or II.)

As a side note, BP III, for me & many others I know, is a newly- created classification (it's not even noted in the DSM-IV)and b/c BP III is brought on by the use of drugs; most notabley steroids, it also goes away when the use of the drug stops. Most feel as if the notion of the classification of BP III is paradoxical, but more so, silly. A TV personality came out and told the world about BP III and her horrible struggles with it (mostly on the depressive side) brought on by her use of a steroid for another ailment.It is a disease that is simply awful -no question. However, using a prominent position in the media and the support of a small group of psychologists and other therapists to proport that BP III is as devastating and comparable to the other 2 classifications is absurd. While the disease has been present for thousands of years and just as many cases documented, even in 2005, the psychiatric world does not have a handle on either BP I or BP II. We're just beginning to learn what treatments work, which drugs are more effective, and so on.Thankfully, all of this is not discussed in this text -nor are the diagnoses of BP I vs. BP II -technically. The book refers to manic-depression as an illness and does not call BP into play.This is one possibly confusing part. That is, if the reader were to compare the text to other current texts in which manic depression is referred to as Bipolar Illness with 2 distinct classifications, and of course, occassionally a 3rd, this book may offset or confuse the information provided by another text due to its vagueness and non-technical approach to the focal discussion of what the illness is.

Nonetheless, the authors do an incredible job of tearing apart every bit of the disease so most every reader is able to understand what manic-depression consists of. The 4 overviews of the historical genius' they use to demonstrate how the illness can manifest itself in various ways is wonderful. It also proves the point that hey, you get the bad with the good.And the follow-up, which reinforces the distinct attributes of the illness in a more medical way, is great. The authors further interwine bits and pieces of the lives of other manic-depressives, both past and present, into the text. This aids in helping the reader discern one type of depression from another or one type of mania from another - especially for those who are not familiar with classical and historical persons. For example, the reader will learn about the tragic life of Van Gogh and also read a bit about Marilyn Monroe so if one is not quite familiar with one personality, they probably will be with the other. Again, this helps in coming to an overall understanding of the disease for those who are not familiar with it.

So few books on Bipolar Illness are well written to the degree that this book is, simply because not enough is known about the disease even now. Once again, the authors discuss this issue and how essential it is that BP truly needs so much more attention and research applied to its many tenticles. The authors are able to construct a very well-rounded, very real picture of what this illness is and how devastating it is. If you do not suffer from the illness, are not a doctor who studies it, or have been involved VERY closely with someone who suffers from the disease, but are curious about it, this is a great read. My fiancee read it and now understands how and why my moods oscillate the way they do. Other books from my "BP Library" have been of no help to him or my family at all. This one was. I believe that the combination of the narratives and medical chapters make the book enjoyable and not tedious. Furthermore, you're not reading about how to solve a problem -which so many books on BP illness attempt to do. Currently, there is no cure for BP I or II but there are ways to treat the illness so the effects of the disease are less crippling.This text tells you like it is and recognizes that real people suffer from it; probably many more than are accounted for.

If nothing else, you can read it in a few hours, at the beach, what have you. Personally, I -and many of my colleagues-agree this is one of the better books on the market at the present time to help people truly understand what Bipolar people go through on both a grand and minute scale. ... Read more

4. Living Without Depression and Manic Depression: A Workbook for Maintaining Mood Stability (New Harbinger Workbooks)
by Mary Ellen Copeland
Paperback: 263 Pages (1994-09)
list price: US$21.95 -- used & new: US$7.49
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1879237741
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
Living Without Depression and Manic Depression outlines a program that helps people achieve real breakthroughs in coping and healing. This exhaustive handbook covers the following issues: self-advocacy, building a network of support, developing a wellness lifestyle, achieving calmness with energy, symptom prevention strategies, building self-esteem, developing a personalized plan for mood stability, building a career that works, trauma resolution, dealing with sleep problems, diet, vitamin and herbal therapies, dealing with stigma, managing medication side effects, psychotherapy and counseling alternatives, learning to have fun, laughter and pleasure. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (10)

4-0 out of 5 stars Worthwhile resource
This book makes for a worthwhile resource for the clinician who works with those individuals who suffer from Depression and Manic Depression. I gave a tele-conference this month entitled "Dealing with my Loved Ones Depression" and the assignments were fitting to the topic. They are also useful in the ongoing counseling relationship.
As I spoke about during the tele-conference as many people are celebrating and looking forward to the holiday there are many more who are struggling with depression, experiencing suicidal thoughts, feeling hopeless and helpless, as well as there will be an increase in psychiatric admissions.Depression is more than something to "get over." It needs the understanding of the family members and the assistance of trained professionals. In my private practice of Personal Life Coaching I work with the family members who live and love someone with depression. They need to know there is help and support for them.

5-0 out of 5 stars LIving without manic depression and depression
The book is very helpful. It's hands-on and easy to use.I have been able to take things from the book and use them in my everyday life.

5-0 out of 5 stars Big Help!
This is a big help to me.Really appreciate this book.Recommend it to anyone looking for help.

3-0 out of 5 stars Not as good as the other workbook
It is a good one, but I really am disappointed that it is not as good as her workbook that is titled Living With Depression and Manic Depression.I found that it was harder for me to relate to this workbook compared to her other workbook.I would recommend the other one.

4-0 out of 5 stars Good information for living without depression or manic depression
I am another person who finds proper diet and exercise and other positive activities help those diagnosed with these illness, often overdiagnosed.I was told by uncaring people I would need medication all my life and encouraged by people who really listened to me rather than think I "had no insight into my condition" and helped me see myself as the normal person I am and do positive things without depending on medication to live a good ordinary life.This has good suggestions for that.I only don't agree that once diagnosed depressed or manic depressed or bipolar or any other mental illness that you need medication for the rest of your life as so many are told nowadays. ... Read more

5. A Brotherhood of Tyrants: Manic Depression & Absolute Power
by D. Jablow Hershman, Julian Lieb
Hardcover: 219 Pages (1994-06)
list price: US$38.98 -- used & new: US$27.50
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0879758880
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
D Jablow Hershman and Julian Lieb uncover manic depression as a hidden cause of dictatorship, war, and mass killing. In comparing these three tyrants, they describe a number of behavioural similarities supporting the contention that a specific psychiatric disorder - manic depression - can be one of the key factors in such political pathologies as tyranny and terrorism. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (6)

4-0 out of 5 stars Interesting pathology of notorious rulers
The authors are quite convincing in their portrayal of Hitler and, especially, Napoleon as Manic Depressives. Their case of Stalin, however, is completely unconvincing; Stalin clearly was a psychopath.

Napoleon was a charismatic leader, but he completely abandoned his army both in Egypt and in Russia. With the bi-polar disorder, the authors have found a convincing explanation for the extremes of his behavior.

In the case of Hitler, I want to refer to the book "When Illness strikes the Leader" by Post and Robins. They describe how Hitler was taking coke and speed simultaneously. Cocaine produces a sense of well-being and confidence that can mount to feelings of elation and grandiosity. Hitler's doctor, Morell, administered his notorious patient a wide array of sedatives. Hitler confessed: "If I had not got my faithful Morell, I should be absolutely knocked out!" Hitler's addictions could also explain his successive symptoms of elation and depression.

4-0 out of 5 stars an interesting view of history
This book provides a new perspective with which to examine some of history's most notorious leaders. I agree that Hitler and Napoleon seemed to exhibit symptoms of mania, though I'm not sure about Stalin. I'd say in general, many leaders throughout history may have been manic or hypomanic. George Custer and Alexander the Great, for example. An entertaining and somewhat controversial read.Avery Z. Conner author of "Fevers of the Mind"

5-0 out of 5 stars A fascinating perspective on history, rarely explored
I don't know why I bought this book, and I didn't read it for several years after I bought it, but one day I picked it up, and I couldn't put it down! It is a most unusual and fascinating perspective on what drove three men to absolute power and madness - that all three of them shared similar mental illnesses. True? Perhaps. Interesting? I have read it at least twice since. A must read!

5-0 out of 5 stars possibly the most enlightening document of recent history
This document is so accurate it will not be appreciated for years, as are many great works. General public usually 20 years behind.

5-0 out of 5 stars possibly the most enlightening document of recent history
This document is so accurate it will not be appreciated for years, as are many great works. General public usually 20 years behind. ... Read more

6. Manic-Depressive Illness: Bipolar Disorders and Recurrent Depression, 2nd Edition
by Frederick K. Goodwin, Kay Redfield Jamison
Hardcover: 1262 Pages (2007-03-22)
list price: US$115.00 -- used & new: US$82.47
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0195135792
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
The revolution in psychiatry that began in earnest in the 1960s led to dramatic advances in the understanding and treatment of manic-depressive illness. Hailed as the most outstanding book in the biomedical sciences when it was originally published in 1990, Manic-Depressive Illness was the first to survey this massive body of evidence comprehensively and to assess its meaning for both clinician and scientist.It also vividly portrayed the experience of manic-depressive illness from the perspective of patients, their doctors, and researchers. Encompassing an understanding about the illness as Kraeplin conceived of it- about its cyclical course and about the essential unity of its bipolar and recurrent unipolar forms- the book has become the definitive work on the topic, revered by both specialists and nonspecialists alike.

Now, in this magnificent second edition, Drs. Frederick Goodwin and Kay Redfield Jamison bring their unique contribution to mental health science into the 21st century. In collaboration with a team of other leading scientists, a collaboration designed to preserve the unified voice of the two authors, they exhaustively review the biological and genetic literature that has dominated the field in recent years and incorporate cutting-edge research conducted since publication of the first edition. They also update their surveys of psychological and epidemiological evidence, as well as that pertaining to diagnostic issues, course, and outcome, and they offer practical guidelines for differential diagnosis and clinical management.The medical treatment of manic and depressive episodes is described, strategies for preventing future episodes are given in detail, and psychotherapeutic issues common in this illness are considered.Special emphasis is given to fostering compliance with medication regimens and treating patients who abuse drugs and alcohol or who pose a risk of suicide. This book, unique in the way that it retains the distinct perspective of its authors while assuring the maximum in-depth coverage of a vastly expanded base of scientific knowledge, will be a valuable and necessary addition to the libraries of psychiatrists and other physicians, psychologists, clinical social workers, neuroscientists, pharmacologists, and the patients and families who live with manic-depressive illness. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (25)

4-0 out of 5 stars Bipolar information
This is a comprehensive text written for professionals in the field.It is not appropriate for the layman except in conjunction with other material to elaborate on terms and functions.Kay Jamison is tops in her field.I recommend her other books for the layman. An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness

5-0 out of 5 stars The Authority
I am not a Doctor.The reason I purchased this book was because I wished to fully understand these sort of mood disorders.I have a disease that sorts along the spectrum of these disorders.

One of the truly effective ways you aid yourself is by developing insight to the greatest degree possible.Many of your deepest thoughts are NOT your own in the sense that they are an expression of the illness itself, symptoms as it were.

However this is a massive, professional work and you must be prepared for a considerable effort.

If you are beginning your self-discovery you might start with "Touched By Fire".

The course of recurring mood disorder is different in every individual but it progresses like Multiple Sclerosis over time and can easily cripple.Untreated, the outcome is likely very poor.

MD is the neurological disorder most likely to occur with Multiple Sclerosis.Both are genetic in origin and share many of the same disease causing genes

5-0 out of 5 stars THE authoritative work on the subject
The second edition of this classic will provide more than any psychiatrist needs to know about Manic-
Depressive illness.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Bipolar Bible.
This book is more important than the DSM and the ICD when it comes to Bipolar. It's mostly for professionals who have to deal with diagnosis and need to understand the illness. The writting style is overly accademic and cumbersome however it is the most useful and informative book around by a long shot. At around 1200 pages long, this is not a cover to cover quick read unless you have several months with nothing else to do.

5-0 out of 5 stars Content of Textbook
This book is very thorough and gives an in depth look into the most recent research surrounding manic depressive disorder and depression. Starting with the history surrounding mental illness, moving along to diagnosis, prognosis, course of the illness', physiological, biochemical and anatomical changes that occur along with up to date research in it's genetic component, this book gives great insight into mood disorders. ... Read more

7. Manic Depression: How to Live While Loving a Manic Depressive
by Lynn Bradley
Paperback: 134 Pages (2004-05-15)
list price: US$16.95 -- used & new: US$8.24
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1885373287
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
Living with a manic depressive can be an excruciatingly difficult experience. This is a chronicle of personal experience with the emotional roller coaster of a serious but treatable disorder/ ... Read more

Customer Reviews (10)

4-0 out of 5 stars Very helpful book
I enjoyed this book and read it all in one sitting.I have felt so alone loving someone who is bipolar and this book was the first one to put into words many aspects of how this felt.If you have someone close to you with this illness, it can help you to deal with your own emotions and be understanding, yet still practice self-care.

Basically, it is one woman's unique story of her relationship with her bipolar husband.However, there are not a lot of unnecessary details or "story", just anecdotes that are practical to help you see how one woman copes and survives.I found this immensely helpful personally.

It is a short book (less than 150 pages) and worth the price.

3-0 out of 5 stars A Good Starting Point
This book starts out with Mrs. Bradley tricking her husband into going into the hospital.Fortunately for her, it worked.He was willing to seek treatment.How he reacted to being tricked wasn't mentioned.
How their children dealt with his illness was skimmed over in one sentence.I'm sure they would have a completely different story, having watched their father verbally attack their mother over the years. I didn't get the feeling that Mrs. Bradley was being honest in that regard.
She did give some helpful tips on how to cope with your own anxiety and/or depression when dealing with these people.There was plenty of humor and irony to go along with the sadness and frustration.That helped me a great deal.
My situation is different in that my mother-in-law is the bi-polar (undiagnosed and untreated).This book outlined her personality almost to a T.It also helped me to understand my father-in-law and why he won't leave her despite her destructive behavior.
This book is a good starting point regardless of the relationship you have with the bi-polar.I would, however, look at other books and resources on this subject to better educate yourself.

1-0 out of 5 stars She's a NUTCASE!
She is a nutcase married to a nutcase.She is a co dependant door mat making her life revolve around her husband.I am married to a bipolar person but I will not be verbally abused nor will I walk and egg shells my whole life.Marriage is a compromise between two people and her husband holds the upper hand in that marriage.I realize that bi-polar people are sick HOWEVER that does not mean that the spouse, friend or relative has to subject themselves to inappropriate behavior and insults.

If you subsitute BiPolar for Abusive in the title would you still hold her opinions as gospel?I hope the answer is no.All she tells you about is how to pray and how to tip toe around your own house so that not to upset the bipolar in your life.

The book has few redeemable qualities, she explains bipolar as it relates to her husband (however, she thinks she is an experet on Manic/Depression because she is married to one!I married a rocket scientist does that make me one too?)

I don't know what books the other reviewers read but in my opinion save your money.

4-0 out of 5 stars Nice to know your not alone
I found this book to be helpful.Not so much in that it offered any new information, but it did put into words some of the feelings that go along with loving someone with bipolar.That whole am I crazy for staying feeling.I would recommend this book to others more as a validation of your own thoughts and feelings, not so much on tips or suggestions.Again like most books on manic depression it focuses too much on the depression side.While this is helpful there needs to be more written on how to handle and deal with the manic fazes.Overall a good read though.

5-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Book
This is an excellent book!It for anybody who has anybody with BiPolar in your life.I myself have the disorder, but the fact is what the people we love go through.It explains alot, and gives help to try in reclaiming yourown inner peace.I know, I have been called a whirlwind myself.We say things we don't mean or even remember and I myself will never know what this actually has done to others.This book is just that for the " others " and was very information and enjoyable reading.I highly recommend this book. ... Read more

8. Mind Gone Awry - A Bipolar Recovery
by Donald Kern
Paperback: 261 Pages (2007-12-01)
list price: US$19.95 -- used & new: US$19.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0914615378
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
Mind Gone Awry - A Bipolar Recovery, describes the first signs of the author's bipolar disorder. It discusses his resistance to facing what was happening to him, to ultimately accepting that he had a mental illness. Finally seeking and accepting help, Donald Kern underscores the case for psychiatric intervention and medication, as well as psychological support. "Mind Gone Awry - A Bipolar Recovery," is an intimate story of how he coped with mental illness. It is not a guide, but rather the story of a 24-year journey from psychosis to health. From the author's story, the reader will learn tips on coping with mental illness. Donald Kern is a psychotherapist who also has bipolar disorder. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (5)

5-0 out of 5 stars A valuable contribution
Thanks to Donald Kern for this helpful book. As a full-time psychiatrist and the author of 3 books on bipolar disorder and one on depression, I can vouch for the accuracy of Donald's perceptions of his bipolar episodes and transitions to health. It is an important contribution to understanding the changes in thinking and perception that are created by the bipolar condition.
I would recommend this book to other individuals with bipolar disorder who want to find information and hope for a complete recovery. I would especially recommend it to relatives, friends, professionals, and interested parties who want to gain insight on the personal experience of bipolar psychosis.
Donald's experience will not be the same as all other bipolar readers-- for example, many sufferers do not have psychosis, or take much longer to find appropriate diagnosis and effective treatment. Nevertheless, his message is critical-- that bipolar disorder is a physical illness of the nervous system that has specific symptoms, is diagnosible, and is treatable by medications and the right kind of psychotherapy.
Hurray for this book!---Wes Burgess, MD, PhD

5-0 out of 5 stars If you or anyone you know is bipolar you must read Mind Gone Awry!
My mother is bipolar, or manic depressive as it is more popularly known, and I recently started blogging about what it was like to grow up with a bipolar parent. As a conscientious blogger I get daily Google alerts for the phrase "bipolar disorder" just to keep track of who is talking about the issue and meet fellow bloggers, and that is how I met Donald Kern, a California-based therapist who -- since he too has bipolar disorder -- specializes in treating bipolar patients.

"How interesting," I thought. "A therapist with bipolar disorder; who knew?" My mom has never been highly functional at the best of times, and unfortunately she pulled me along for many of her great manic adventures. When I saw that Kern had written a book about his own experiences that led up to his becoming a therapist, I knew I wanted to read it. Mind Gone Awry has given me insight into what my mother was experiencing in a way that I never quite understood before. In fact, while I still cannot forgive a lot of what I was put through as a child and teenager, I can review those experiences with a slightly softer heart after reading this book.

On his blog, Bipolar By Chance, Kern states,

"Bipolar since the age of 25, I have gained a lot of knowledge about the disorder, not only as an author, but as a licensed therapist bent on treating those who share this diagnosis. I also share my stories with my clients, tales of dark passages through madness, sprinkled with novel, lighthearted punctuation on occasion. Hearing my reflections about my delusional state from the past seems to help my clients relate to their own traumas and their own struggles with maladaptive thoughts, behaviors which stretch the meaning of normalcy. "I feel heard," they say. So at some point I started to write my stories down, which gave me a reason to write, Mind Gone Awry. If hearing my experiences helps others to come to their own epiphanies about their lives, it is a good thing."

Kern had his first manic experience at age 25 in 1973 when he started to feel that television movies were speaking to him and sending him messages, that winos were sending him secret messages, and that he had in fact been chosen by the President of the United States to be his spiritual adviser on all issues. Suddenly I was reminded of two personal experiences. In the first I came home from school and the TV was in the trash room of our apartment building and all of the electrical appliances in the house were unplugged. My mother told me that "they" were trying to contact her through the electric sockets, but most especially the TV and radio.

The second experience was on an ill-fated adventure my mother took me on when she pulled me out of ninth grade and took me to New York City (we lived in upstate New York at the time). There was an ad on the radio for concerts that were being put on by MLK Productions, and my mother (whose initials are ML) leaned over and whispered, "Do you hear that? Do you know that when they say MLK Productions it is a message to me? That's how I know taking you away from here is a good thing." At least she only went a few hundred miles. Kern moved to Israel!

Over his life Kern went on and off medications, in and out of therapy, and in and out of jobs. When he finally met the woman he loved and wanted to be with the time for that was over. Now on regular medications and stable for 30 years, married, and having built a successful private practice, Kern gives an honest account of living with bipolar disorder. If you or anyone you know is bipolar you must read Mind Gone Awry!

2-0 out of 5 stars My Bipolar Journey
"Mind Gone Awry" is the autobiography of an ordinary person. It is my story. It is your story if you have bipolar disorder (Type I). Unfortunately, this does not make it a page-turner. You'll have to skip through a lot of humdrum details of ordinary life. The book will help you identify, and identify with, the symptoms of bipolar disorder. It will also give you hope. Here is someone who struggled with the beast and prevailed and that struggle is recorded in detail. The author is not a natural storyteller but he does tell the story of his life bravely and without glossing over the painful incidents of mania in particular, but also mental hospital, depression, loss of self-esteem and the long journey to coping successfully with bipolar disorder.

5-0 out of 5 stars From the Inside Out
"BiPolar Disorder" is a mystery, a catch-all term that overs a myriad of symptoms lumped together in the public's mind. Here is a book that is written from the inside out, by a long-time sufferer who has battled his way through the disease and gained a clinician's knowledge as part of the journey. It is a riveting account of a mind that has declared war on its possessor, and the unsteady truce that the author's force of will has imposed on it. Powerful and rewarding, the book claims no complete and absolute victory, chronicles the ongoing battle, and allows the reader to catch a glimpse of what a bipolar patient experiences. This is not a book by a journalist, sleek and glossy and academic, but an honest, enthralling, personalized account. It is more than worth reading!!!

5-0 out of 5 stars Mind Gone Awry
I read this book, not being someone with a biplar condition, but to better understand those I know who are struggling with this problem.It shows both objective and subjective points of view that give frank personal experiences of bipolar behavior and the ultimate success of recovery.

Mr. Kern's writing style gives the reader the sensual feelings of being there - not only during his bipolar experiences, but especially in the physical settings of his story.He doesn't soften the blow of being bipolar, but at the novel's conclusion one sees the positive result of someone trying to overcome it.

I definaely would recommend this book to readers with bipolar personalities and those who love them.

... Read more

9. As I Am: Living in Acceptance with Manic Depression
by Anne Neill
Paperback: 226 Pages (2006-07-06)
list price: US$21.00 -- used & new: US$14.32
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1552129071
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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As I Am was a book written out of need. Manic depression caught me totally off guard and sent me whirling for years before I ended in the mental health unit. The night before I was admitted, one of my 'grandiose' ideas was to write a book about what was happening in my life to help 'people like me.'

My book and the possibility of it becoming, became my therapy, my private solution. Literally, I examined in my mind every singe impacted memory and recorded my thoughts with the idea that I would be published some day.

As I Am had over 40 different titles and took over six years to write and edit. This book takes you into the mind of a mentally ill woman who is on a journey of survival. You cannot imagine the trail I had to take to become a strong willed, self-sufficient, triumphant human being.

This illness not only affected me but everyone who ever loved and supported me. My dedication to writing this book was influenced by their belief in me. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

3-0 out of 5 stars Hard to read
I appreciate reading the story, and the effort the author put into it. Yet I had a hard time reading it. The author could have used the help of an editor. She tends to get off topic quite often. At times her writing style is a tad too casual prompting me to wonder what she really meant since it can be hard for the written word to fully capture someone's mood. Mood, after all, is a big component of meaning. I also wish the print had been larger. So basically, the sticky point for me was readability more than the story itself, which has many merits.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Review from Ann Neill's cousin
The topic of this book is something that too many people have had to go through, including myself, Ann writes straight from the heart...gritty, brutally honest,and truthfully!

For anyone with someone in thier lives who's had to live through the pain of incest and depression, or if you just want to hear her story to realize that your not alone, get this book!

I Love You Ann.....
... Read more

10. Is it Weird in Here or is it Just Me? A Real-time and First-hand Account of Depression for Families, Friends and Carers
by Rod Whyte
Kindle Edition: Pages (2010-04-16)
list price: US$0.99
Asin: B003HS4UDA
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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'Is it weird in here or is it just me?' is a book will give you more of an insight into depression than any other you’ll ever read on the illness.If you are caring for someone with depression or you’re a parent and would like to arm yourself with accurate knowledge of its symptoms, then this book lets you experience the illness from a remarkably honest perspective.For some reason (perhaps known only to God), the author was given an opportunity to write extensively about his depression while he was hospitalised and while he was actually experiencing the blitzkrieg of symptoms that depression presents.

This book is unique because most of it is written in real time, which means that in every way, it’s a realistic and practical guide for any person or parent who is caring for someone with depression, explaining what’s actually happening within the sufferer’s mind at the time of experiencing the symptoms of the illness.

Further, it provides you, the carer, with a great slab of sensible and realistic on-the-spot advice on how to best offer support for the person you’re caring for – whatever the symptom.Finally and most importantly, this book is written for the person you’re caring for, because through you, it will help validate their own experiences and reassure them that what they’re experiencing isn’t abnormal or crazy (at least in the sense of what depression is) – it’s actually the depression that’s made their life so unpredictable and almost all of the time, so desolate and so very desperate.

The author's knowledge of psychology and treatment options for mental illness is extensive, however his own hospitalisation with depression has been the ultimate experience that has enabled him to provide such an intensely personal and highly informative guide.

As you’ll read, Rod’s life is an open book – in fact, it IS this book – and through it you’ll find all of the answers to the questions you seek on depression.

Thanks to his efforts, depression is no longer the secret it once was.
... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars This book describes what depression is *really* like!!
I can't express how much I want you to read this book. Rod has written down what is truly going on in the mind of a depressed person, and what is most remarkable is that he wrote it while he was himself in the middle of a *deep* clinical depression, He describes what depressed persons think about (it's really all they do), what their suffering is really like, as they experience their worst days.

He also describes their good days, and at least one or two things that can help a depressed person have one. My personal favorite is the observation (and I am paraphrasing an entire chapter here) that "affirmations don't generally work for a depressive, but having a depressed person recollect previous good moments in their life, when they had done something of value to themselves, can be a transformative experience for them"

I am very grateful to Rod for writing this book. I hope everyone who suffers depression and all of their friends, family, and medical professionals get to read this book. It will truly, truly, truly help them battle this terrible thing that is depression.

5-0 out of 5 stars A DEFINITE must-buy
This is the first time I've ever written a review for a book, let alone give it top marks, so that'll give you an indication of what I thought about this book called Is It Weird in Here or is it Just Me.

I must have read hundreds of books on depression in an effort to try and help my son who's now in his early twenties and help me understand what's going on with him.This is the FIRST (believe me, it's true) book that has made such a big impact upon me and my relationship with my son, and it sounds corny I know, but it's also the first one where I've laughed, cried and learned so much all in one hit.

The author said that his book is unlike any other book on depression and he's right.The perspective of one who is writing the book while he's suffering and hospitalised is just extraordinary.And knowing what my son has been through, I don't know how the author wrote it, but I'm extremely glad he did.When you read the book, it'll be almost like you know him, that's how personal it gets - but that's a good thing.In fact, I think it's necessary.

This should be compulsory reading for anyone who's caring for someone with depression or a mood disorder.I'm not sure whether the author is marketing this book elsewhere, but if he isn't he most definitely should be, because everyone should read it, not just those of us lucky enough to have a Kindle or other ebook reader.

I just can't get over this book - it's made such an impact on me... Trust me, if you're caring for someone with depression, this is the book you need to read.I stumbled across it, bought it `just in case' it was good, and it was brilliant.To the author, my son and I thank you.
... Read more

11. Agents in My Brain: How I Survived Manic Depression
by Bill Hannon
Paperback: 268 Pages (1997-05-01)
list price: US$33.00 -- used & new: US$7.45
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0812693469
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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A few brave souls in the public eye, such as Patty Duke, Kay Redfield Jamieson, and more recently, Margot Kidder, have come forward to reveal something about themselves that they had tried very hard to keep hidden -- the fact that they suffer from a mental illness called "manic depression". Also known as "bipolar disorder", this illness is only dimly understood by the population at large and, unfortunately, misconceptions abound.

In this compelling autobiography, Bill Hannon offers an engrossing first-hand account of living with a serious mental illness and the disturbing delusions and paranoias which rendered him incapable of holding a job or accepting help from his friends and family. From his earliest manic episode during a high school trip abroad to his struggles with mis-diagnoses and the frightening side-effects of prescribed drugs, Hannon guides the reader into a world in which crossword puzzles are coded messages from the C.I.A. and a scrap of masking tape on a car windshield means that his conversations are being monitored.

Never before has an author described his own manic episodes in such fascinating and insightful detail as Hannon does in Agents in My Brain. It is this feature that sets the book apart from all other accounts of manic depression. Agents in My Brain is essential reading for anyone who has encountered manic depression on either a first-or second-hand basis.

"A vivid and often poignant portrayal of what it is like to grapple with the realities of manic depressive disorder". -- Timothy Twito, M.D.

"Agents in My Brain is an outstanding piece of work. I am manic-depressive myself, and Bill Hannon's book really tells it like it is". -- M.A.L. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (8)

4-0 out of 5 stars a severe look at bipolar disorder
This book provides an interesting first hand account of bipolar I disorder with psychotic features. In other words, the author has the most severe form of the illness. While the writing isn't as good as in the finest mental illness memoirs, like "An Unquiet Mind", the author is still able to vividly communicate the horrors of this illness. I do wish he would have been a little more constructive in his criticisms of psychiatry, as perhaps some readers will get the impression that this is not a very treatable illness, when in fact it is. I do, however, agree that it does often take many years before a bipolar individual is properly diagnosed. Overall, a good book that should be read by anyone interested in bipolar disorder.Avery Z. Conner, author of "Fevers of the Mind".

5-0 out of 5 stars Agents In My Brain
I have read the reviews of the readers and I was so impressed that I am going to buy this book.My husband is Bipolar and he was first diagnosed with this illness when he was 21 yrs old.He is now 54 years old.We have been married for 24 yrs and it wasn't until 1995 that he was diagnosed as Bipolar.The doctors who treated him in the late '60's said he was paronoid schizophrenia.It is a shame that these people are treated like lepers.Bioplar is an illness like, cancer or any other illness.Why is it hard for others to understand that?His bestfriend since he was 6 yrs old doesn't talk or call him. I will get this book.

5-0 out of 5 stars Agents in My Brain
I knew nothing about manic depression.This book opened my eyes to a disease that is hard to image for most people.Mr. Hannon brings his feelings and thoughts to his readers and in a very remarkable way, he isable to share his painful daily struggles.I would highly recommend thisbook to all University psychology classes and in particular to MedicalSchools.Mr. Hannon's personal insight could help physicians make anearlier diagnosis and positively impact the lives of others that becomeafflicted with this disease.

4-0 out of 5 stars Great insight into manic-depression
I have a friend who is bipolar.I'd read "A Mood Apart" a fewmonths ago, which gave me some good information.But Hannon's bookprovides real insight and understanding for a nonbipolar person about whatthis condition must be like.The list of symptoms at the back of the bookis also very useful in identifying what may seem like eccentricities ofM-Ds.This book, along with "A Mood Apart" or "The UnquietMind" will take anyone who wishes to understand the topic a long waydown that road. If I could have a magic wish in regard to this book,however, it would be for a better style of writing.At times, it remindedme of Kurt Vonnegut's "Breakfast of Champions," but I think thatmay have been unintentional.

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Portrayal of Manic-Depressive Illness!
This is a wonderful account of the path of destruction manic-depressive illness can leave in the life of it's victim.I was really moved by Mr. Bill Hannon's story. I feel like I know some of the most intimate details of his life.I also felt a kinship to Bill because I also suffer withManic-Deppresive Illness and had been mis-diagnosed for many years withschizo-affective and schizophrenia regardless to the obvious history myfamily had with manic-depressive illness.My daughter has now beendiagnosed with Manic-depression and even though I had attempted to conveymy family history to the psychiatrist treating her, manic-depression wastheir last resort diagnosis.They tried ADHD, borderline, andschizoaffective labels on her.When they finally put her on the right doseof Depakote, a sleeping peel, and an anti-depressant, she is now like thedaughter I remember before the onset of the disorder.She is now 16, herfirst episode was manic at 14 years of age.

Bill does a wonderful jobof detailing the symptoms that he went through, even though the lousypsychiatrists he had didn't recognize and diagnose them properly.Billalso does a wonderful job showing how important early diagnosis andtreatment is to the sufferer even though he didn't have the benefits of itas a result of incompetence, arrogance, and/or complacency.

Finally, Ihave had a lot of delusion and paranoid thoughts and behaviors with theillness.It really helped to hear the details of what was going on inanother manic depressives head.I was afraid to tell my care provider'ssome things because I didn't want to be misdiagnoses as schizoprenic again. It help to know that the delusions I have while manic are still within thesame diagnosis.As Bill says, "Knowledge is Power".

Thanks forsharing Bill.I am so happy you are getting better as am I. ... Read more

12. The Marriage of Heaven and Hell: Manic Depression and the Life of Virginia Woolf
by Peter Dally
Paperback: 240 Pages (2001-03-19)
list price: US$13.95 -- used & new: US$12.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0312272731
Average Customer Review: 2.5 out of 5 stars
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Combining his knowledge as a doctor and a lifelong fascination with Virginia Woolf's life and work, eminent psychiatrist Peter Dally offers a haunting and compelling look at the depression that tormented Virginia Woolf throughout her adult years.On three ocassions Virginia went mad.Symptoms of these episodes included conversations with her dead mother, and hearing birds speak in Greek.Thougha quiet life cushioned her childhood, the renown Woolf achieved through writing inspired the bouts of depression and elation that she regularly experienced as an adult.This terrified Virginia, and though the experience offered extraordinary insight into her craft, Woolf lived in constant fear of her dreadful affliction.Virginia's most vital protection from stress was her husband, Leonard.Without his constant vigilance and care, it is doubtful she would have been so creatively productive.Yet, paradoxically, their marriage ultimately preciptated her most dangerous bout of madness.Toward the end of her life, when events outside the couple's control led to Leonard's own depression and gradual withdrawal, Virginia found herself facing madness alone, and with tragic results.Compassionate and disturbing, this fascinating study is the first to look at Virginia Woofl's life from the perspective of her illness. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (6)

5-0 out of 5 stars Analyze this!
The author is a retired English psychiatrist who became a Virginia Woolf fan after reading "Mrs Dalloway."

For a reader new to Virginia Woolf, this could serve as a pretty good biography of Woolf. It's relatively short, provides a good overview, and would encourage the reader to explore all Virginia Woolf has to offer.

For a Virginia Woolf fan, it fills in the gaps, connecting the dots between Virginia's episodes of insanity and depression with events in her life.

In addition, Dally does an outstanding job analyzing the romantic and sexual relationships among the Bloomsbury bunch.

Dally includes a Stephen family wiring diagram identifying those with mental illness.

(Incidentally, of the dozens of books I have on Woolf, Dally's book is the only one I have that has a photograph of Vanessa that reveals a stunningly beautiful woman. Virginia was considered as beautiful, if not more so, but the photographs of Virginia must not do her justice. She is pretty in her younger years, but even so, Vanessa seems stunningly gorgeous.)

1-0 out of 5 stars feels like it was written in the 1960s, not the 1990s
It never ceases to amaze me how different people can arrive at such different conclusions from the same set of facts. This book is a great example of that. With nearly every page I found myself marveling at the unsupported conclusions, the questionable assumptions, and the moralistic (and misguided) value judgements left right and center. I found myself editing as I read, deleting whole paragraphs of blather as I went along. There is a set of facts about her illness, and you must arrive at your own interpretation of those facts. But some conclusions come nearer the truth than others -- and if you ask me, this one misses by a mile. If you want a book about Woolf's illnesses, read Caramagno's book "The Flight of the Mind: Virginia Woolf's Art and Manic Depressive Illness".

5-0 out of 5 stars The Tragedy of Ignorance Concerning Manic Depression
I was window shoppping at Amazon.com as I often love to do when I came across a book that I have treasured for some time. I was dismayed to see that Peter Dally's magnificent tour de force was not being recognized as such. Frankly, it is beyond comprehension that this would be so! One cannot understand the scope and depth of Virginia Woolf without reference to the marriage to which she so desperately needed in order to achieve the balance and stability necessary (given her illness) which resulted in our watershed of wonder in having such Masterpieces to read and enjoy today! Also, Dally's most compassionate view of her bipolar disorder provides to anyone who has had real experience with this disease profound insight into a curse, really, for so many artists that surely would have resulted in her suicide far sooner had it not been for Leonard Woolf. Surely, he is not perfect. No one is. But Dally provides that all-important insight into the need for all of us to accept the fact that no man or woman is an island unto themselves and in the absence of another upon whom we can rely in times of trial and trouble -- we are all lost. Given the unimaginable low price for this book, if you love VW -- you will not be disappointed!

1-0 out of 5 stars Exactly what Woolf would have expected of a doctor
This is far and away the least insightful, least knowledgeable, least useful book I've ever read about Virginia Woolf.If I ever come across a book by this doctor again, I will shun it like the plague.Here are a few of the many, many ways he went wrong:

1) The "family tree" in the back of the book that supposedly supports his claim that Woolf's mental health issues were genetic is totally incomplete.So far as an informed reader can tell, he only named and "diagnosed" immediate family members of Leslie Stephen and family members who he could identify as having some kind of problem related to Woolf's.Another problem is that he doesn't appear to have presented his evidence for having determined that these people even suffered from the same difficulties one to the other, let alone to Virginia Woolf's manic depression.

2) He constantly undermines the evidence given by women (Virginia Woolf and Vanessa Bell -- Bell is supposed to have not even known whether or not she had a miscarriage in 1911) while bolstering the evidence given by men.He promotes the causes of George Duckworth and Leslie Stephen, and belittles the evidence that George at least may have committed some serious offenses against his half-sisters. In the spirit of humility and a recognition that he was not there and did not know these people, Dally should at least have indicated that the evidence might be sketchy and presented the evidence for his views as *possible*.His attitude towards women is, at best, outdated.Given that, I don't think he should have undertaken to write about one.

3) Dally "diagnoses" medical conditions of people for whom he has extremely limited information without defining his terms.What is cyclothemia?Well, I could look it up in a book, but what it means to Dally or how he came to his conclusion, I'll never know.

4) Dally uses only published sources for his book.Yes, some of them may have been out of print and quite difficult to find, but that doesn't change the fact that he allowed himself to be limited to published sources.There are a lot of documents (Leonard Woolf's letters, for one) that were not published or were published only in part at the time that Dally's book was written.But many of these resources are readily available at university libraries.How he can presume to diagnose and criticize based on an incomplete record -- well, it's an astonishing act of arrogance, and if he were practicing REAL medicine would probably get him sued.

I could say a lot more about Dally's characterizations of Woolf's motivations, his overlooking the importance of various people in her life, his lack of understanding of the period about which he wrote, his utter lack of sympathy for the values of Bloomsbury -- but I don't have enough space.

Bottom line -- this book is junk and although it could have been a terrific addition to Woolf scholarship, any half-competent graduate student could have produced something really useful and far more insightful than this exercise in medical chauvinism.It's exactly the sort of thing Virginia Woolf would have expected from a doctor.

1-0 out of 5 stars Hell is where this psychiatrist belongs
Interesting title, promising subject. But the book is a huge disappointment. If you are looking for a brief biography of Woolf that touches on her bipolar disorder, then this may be what you want. If you want any real discussion of the disorder and a decent analysis of how she developed it and how it manifested itself, go elsewhere.

Dally is a psychiatrist who came of age in the 1950s. He is particularly interested in "manic depression" and anorexia nervosa, and he found both in Woolf. He used her extensive diaries to divine what troubled her, and his own background to determine why.

Dally has a tendency to trot out theories and present them as facts. From the beginning he describes Woolf's illness as genetic and attributes it to her father's side of the family. His "proof" is a family tree that shows that some members of her father's family suffered from various nervous disorders and he could not find as much evidence of such illness on her mother's side. He offers no proof of the genetic basis but merely proclaims it. In the appendix he notes that the genetic basis has not been proven "but it is only a matter of time".

Yet, in his own description of Virginia's childhood, he offers a much more potent and believable basis for her later depressions. Her mother did not want her, essentially rejected her, and always considered her of less value than the males of the family. There was nothing Virginia could do to win her mother's approval, yet she continued to try. As is typical with those with depression, she could not outright reject her mother or blame her for her own pain, and as a result her anger turned inward. This seems a far more plausible reason for her bipolar disorder than some vague genetic predisposition.

He also provides absolute treatment prescriptions, as if he were prescribing an antibiotic for a bacterial infection. Manic-depressives need quiet. They need to be kept from becoming excited. They need people around who will support them. They need to be protected from stress.

Is this true? Would Virginia have not killed herself if she had never had to face stress, if she were kept in the country, if nobody ever offered her any excitement? Even though she herself craved excitement, social interaction? Would she have truly been better off without the parties, the various stresses of everyday living? I was not at all convinced.

Dally's assumptions don't stop with Virginia and Leonard. He proclaims that Virginia's lover, Vita Sackville-West, was incapable of forming long-term intimate bonds. By what means did he make this diagnosis? He never met the woman. He can't possibly know if she was outright "incapable", and he certainly offers no basis for this assertion.

I found the book offensive for these reasons. He has reduced a writer of amazing creativity to a creature with a genetic disease, and has offered no substance for his simplistic analysis. ... Read more

13. Neural Misfire: A True Story of Manic-Depression
by Jeff D. Kazmierczak
Paperback: 278 Pages (2000-08-15)
list price: US$17.95
Isbn: 0967880602
Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
Between 1% and 5% of the population are diagnosed with bipolar disorder, also known as manic-depression.Bipolar disorder, typically a permanent illness, causes debilitating depression, mania, and sometimes delusions, all of which devastate the lives of the afflicted, their families, and friends.Sufferers often seek solace through medication, therapy, and the experiences of other manic-depressives.Personal accounts of manic-depression are in demand by the ill, their families, and friends, who seek to better understand and cope with a frustrating road to wellness.

Books about mental illness have steadily become popular and more mainstream, including "Girl Interrupted," which was recently made into a motion picture.Jeff D. Kazmierczak, a survivor of bipolar disorder, has written a unique account of bipolar disorder designed to appeal to manic-depressives, their families, and friends, as well as general readers accustomed to suspense and psychological drama.

The author wrote "Neural Misfire: A True Story of Manic-Depression" in the unusual format of a novel based on a true story.Most personal accounts of manic-depression present a number of isolated anecdotes."Neural Misfire" contains one continuous story, which describes the protagonist’s path from the early symptoms of depression, to mania, and finally his initial treatment.

Each chapter is time-stamped to punctuate his behavior over the course of 9 months.The manic-depressive’s raw thoughts are provided in italics, so that the reader may view them alongside his behavior and dialogue."Neural Misfire’s" novel format affords the reader a comprehensive look at the transformation of a straight-A, happy 19 year-old into a suicidal and then manic young man. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (6)

1-0 out of 5 stars JUST PLAIN BAD WRITING. . .
Kazmierczak's account of his bipolar disorder had such potential, but it's so badly written that it's not even worth discussing.

It should have at least been ghost written by someone else --perhaps then he could have told his story with other people desperately seeking stories of manic depression.

4-0 out of 5 stars An unusual memoir
Jeff has written in unusual memoir about his struggle with bipolar disorder.It's unusual because the style of writing and method of storytelling are both a bit eccentric- this is fine with me but some readers may have a problem with it.I'm a sucker for memoirs and find that they provide insight into mental illness that no textbook will ever capture.Furthermore, I find that every mental illness memoir author has a unique contribution to make.With these two points in mind, I'd recommend this memoir to anyone suffering from bipolar disorder.Avery Z. Conner, author of "Fevers of the Mind".

4-0 out of 5 stars Neural Misfire
Jeff Kazmierczak has written a startling, reality based novel that will knock your socks off...He shares the tortured, ravaging and challenging mood swings that suddenly emerged in his freshman year of college.He also shares the impact this had on his bewildered, but supportive family.

The other complication in his life, being gay, eventually proves to be manageable and actually rewarding, due to his intelligent, tenacious personality.This also adds to a very powerful read.

Anyone who cares about someone with bipolar illness or sho is in a therapy role should absolutely read this.Although this book is at times difficult, it is well worth the time...

4-0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Story
Wanted to say i read the book and found it very outstanding. I have to give the author credit for writing such a book, It really open my eyes towards mental illness.

1-0 out of 5 stars Save your money!
I have recently been researching bipolar disorder, trying to obtain as much information as possible, including personal experiences, like Pattie Duke's "A Perfect Madness" which was written not only to educate, but to entertain to some degree.

This book did neither. The writer tells his thoughts while going through manic and depressive states, including filthy language and homosexual desires. This didn't add to the story in any way.

Furthermore, the writer's experiences include his relationship with his parents, hospitalization, and treatment. Mr.Kazmierczak doesn't give us closure on any of these issues. For example, does he repair relationships or not, does medication work, did treatment work, etc.

This book is poorly written, leaving anyone looking for solutions without any,it offers up no hope for anyone suffering from this disorder, and it doesn't give proper closure to situations brought up by the author. Not worth the time or money that this book cost. ... Read more

14. Adventures in Bipolarland: ~a novel about real life~
by Reni Seidman
Paperback: 280 Pages (2004-03-22)
list price: US$17.95 -- used & new: US$16.14
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1442175249
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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The newest drug on the antidepressant shelf sends 35 year-old Laurel into a twilight zone of biochemically altered thoughts.Handcuffed, detained, and drugged against her will, she is not aware of her illness. She is fully aware of the inhumane treatment shown to her.Forced to live a different life with a "different" brain, innate strength and manic optimism overcome fear and vulnerability. Police, schizophrenics, doctors, drug addicts, judges, and homeless vets become the people of Laurel's world. A tidal wave of depression hits just as she begins to sort through the chaos. When life hurts so much that it's difficult to keep breathing--when suicide is not an option--the only reasonable response is to move forward as far and as fast as possible. Laurel discovers that the magic of synchronicity exists apart from mania, and she is able to honor the spiritual component of her strange experience. The result is a tale that ends well, for "living well is the best revenge." ... Read more

Customer Reviews (5)

5-0 out of 5 stars Adventures in Bipolarland
A life's story.
That looks into the heart & sole of an undiagnosed living person.
The detailed memory of all that has happened to this person,
is so well described.
Unless you take a glimse into Bipolarland.
"It gives you hope that his too will pass".

5-0 out of 5 stars The world of mania
This book took me on a journey through the world of mania. I had no idea the complexity of the thoughts and feelings of a person suffering from bipolar disorder. This was a real and honest protrayal.

5-0 out of 5 stars An Amazing Adventure
It's hard to imagine that such a tale can be true.Ms. Seidman takes us on an adventure that could be your worst nightmare, especially if it's happening to a family member or friend.She paints a harrowing picture of her experiences with the mental health system, and in the end, we're grateful that she came through it with the strength and ability to tell her story.

5-0 out of 5 stars I could not put this book down
Although mental health care has improved dramatically over what it used to be, it is still unfortunately primitive and cruel in many circumstances.The author starts pulling you along with her on her journey through mental illness and the unforgiving treatment that she receives from the health care system and the world at large, and you find yourself compelled to find out what will happen next and how she ever survives to tell the tale...I truly could not put the book down once I got started.

5-0 out of 5 stars A story of all of our internal struggles
This is one of those one-of-a-kind readings.It goes much further than addressing, on the surface, what some might clinically call a disorder.It is a contemporary story of the endless struggles of life, internally and externally.It is about the extreme challenges we all face - from the demons within to the antagonists that surround us sprinkled with the moments of hope that keep us all going.Ms. Seidman weaves a tale that is exciting and hopeful, terrifying, personal and real.Even though she takes us all the way to the edge of the abyss, this is one book that is very hard to put down. ... Read more

15. Bipolar Balancing Act: Journeying through the valleys and peaks of manic-depression (through the eyes of two who have been there)
by Carol Melcher, Rich Melcher
Paperback: 112 Pages (2002-05-27)
list price: US$11.95 -- used & new: US$9.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0595227554
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Challenges in living with and overcoming bipolar disorder, through the eyes of two who have been there.

... Read more

16. A Can of Madness: Memoir on bipolar disorder and manic depression
by Jason Pegler
Paperback: 248 Pages (2002-04-13)
list price: US$18.00 -- used & new: US$5.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0954221826
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Product Description“A Can of Madness does what it says in the… er can. A brilliant memoir of mania; all the pain, humour, fear and despair is chronicled here in prose of clarity and distinction. Unforgettable and important" - Stephen Fry“This book will help people to understand one of the greatest issues of our time, how to treat those who are mentally disturbed, as human beings” – Rt. Hon. Tony Benn MP“The author has done all of us a service by writing about how it feels, not just to be manic depressive, but to have a life of fraught and edgy encounters with just about everyone” – The Times Literary SupplementDescriptionA vivid, honest and sometimes disturbing memoir about the experience of having a diagnosis of manic-depression. It was in two stages (not using a diary that i collected as it says in the Mind Press Release 2002. After i read Prozac Nation in 1998 i wrote two pages. Knowing i had something amazing to say i was paralysed for two years with the thought of writing it. Then when i was given my own flat in Vauxhall after my last hospitalisation in St Thomas's Hospital in 2000 i wrote every day for about 12-16 weeks and got it all of my chast. From that moment i felt that i had written the book that had saved the Ecstasy generation although it turned into a mental health crusade to give other people a voice. Like other books in this genre, the author is often painfully honest about his experiences. He recounts a dizzying, dark and sometimes euphoric journey through a world of elation, despair, binge drinking, drugs, raves and psychiatric wards. As well asattempting to educate the reader, the book also provides optimism and hope, showing that it is finally possible to learn to live with, and accept, having a mental health problem. Writing A Can of Madness saved my life and alot of other people have told me that it has helped their lives. About the AuthorJason Pegler is 33 and lives in London. Jason was diagnosed with manic depression in 1993 and wrote 'A Can of Madness' to stop other seventeen year olds going through what he went through. Graduating from Manchester University in 1998 he founded Chipmunkapublishing the mental health publisher which aims to help mental health sufferers. Pegler is a mental health activist, journalist, rapper, public speaker and consultant on anything that promotes a positive image on mental health. In 2005 Pegler won the New Statesman's Young Social Entrepreneur of the Year Award. He is a key figure in the mental health movement. Book ExtractAs I was being driven off in the back of a police van in a space suit, I thought I was Donovan Bad Boy Smith being driven to a rave. I could hear music in my head and flashed back to another night at The Brunel Rooms in Swindon. The Brunel Rooms, a hard-core Mecca for druggies from Gloucester and surrounding areas in the early to mid nineties. Donovan was so hardcore when I saw him there that he'd refused to turn off his set at 3. He'd carried on until 3.30 when someone finally turned off the electricity mid flow.Talking of flows (as opposed to stable mindsets), just how the fuck do you live with a mental illness? Don't ask me, I'm still trying to find out now. After all, it's not something you plan, let alone something you'd ever expect to have. As we all say: it won't happen to me. But it can. And in this case, it did. And if Hercules and Ajax couldn't hack it, how the hell could I? Unsurprisingly, I didn't - and that's why I wallowed in self-pity for so long.So, do you want to know what it's like to be crazy, mad, loopy? Well I'm about to tell you. I'm also going to tell you how it feels to be suicidal for months on end - the fate of the manic. One thing, however, is for sure: The sooner you kill mania the better. For you're a danger to yourself and other people when you don't know what you're doing. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (14)

5-0 out of 5 stars Rollercoaster Ride
I need to write this response to the last review in Jason's defense.It hurts me to hear people taking Jason's book the wrong way.

Jason is one of the most amazing, wonderful, warm ,kind, caring, gentle and senstive people I have ever met,he isaclose, trusted friend and colleague, who devotes his whole life to EMPOWERING nad HELPING othersby being honest and open enough about the pain and mental anguish he suffered as a result of theviolent behaviourwhich can be a direct manifestation of the mood swings associated with Bi Polar described in his book.

The behaviour is a direct description of some of the symptoms of thismental illness. The behaviour manifesting itself duringMental illness is NOT CAUSED BYTHE PERSON WHO IS EXPERIENCING IT. IT IS NOT THE PERSON'S TRUE PERSONALITY , which is masked through the illness, and often becomes like a caged bird ready to take wing.HATE THE BEHAVIOUR, NOT THE PERSON. should be the rule of the thumb when meeting people like ourselves.
Jason is one of the bravest, caring people I have ever met and has touched and changed my life totally through his willingness to share my pain by being there for me whenever I need him, no matter how busy he is.

The NHS need to give Jason a key to the acute wards and let him loose in there for three months, then see how many people would walk out of there completely cured. I'm a walking testimony to how Jason's positivity can cure negative thinking and heal a low self esteem.and can't wait until the new book Curing Madness and the film Cans Of Madness comes out later next year.

Go for it Jason.............

1-0 out of 5 stars Big head
Geez - what is with this guy -does he think is god or something? Talk about I am the greatest.And having a mental illness is no excuse for real bad behavior. Blaming your illness for being a fight seeking red neck is pretty mean on the other folk who have mental illness.

And saving the world of mental illness and the 'first mental health publisher' - who is he kidding.Plenty have been trying to change the views of mental illness and publish about it too before he came along. Stop using our conditions and the likes of us pal.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Completely Honest Autobiography
The author has achieved his aim in writing a completely honest autobiography about coping with a mental illness. This book is suitable for everybody; those who are unaware of the tremendous difficulties of living with a mental illness will find this book very shocking as well as a rewarding read.

5-0 out of 5 stars A CAN OF MADNESS - JASON PEGLER
Pegler opens your eyes with his first-hand account of manic depression. A touching read, it helped me gain an understanding of the issues brought about by mental health. It was particularly moving for me as I have friends and relatives that are going through and have gone through similar experiences. I recommend it to anyone even remotely interested in the area of mental health.

5-0 out of 5 stars Fantastic!!!
Very powerful, very emotional, and most of all honest book of all time. This book is worth reading! ... Read more

17. The Key to Genius/Manic-Depression and the Creative Life
by D. Jablow Hershman, Julian Lieb
Hardcover: 220 Pages (1988-03)
list price: US$29.95 -- used & new: US$201.04
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0879754370
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Upside of Bipolar Illness
While Bipolar illness is a dangerous psychiatric disorder, often leading to suicide if untreated, it also has an upside for civilization. While it is obvious that not all individuals with bipolar illness(aka manic depression)possess genius, there are those who do....probably in the same proportion as in the rest of society.

However, this book argues that if you compare two individuals of equal talent and equal intelligence, the one who has bipolar illness is more likely to produce works of genius because of the spurts of energy and insight that come with the illness.

A great illustration of this is the movie 'Amadeus' in which Mozart and Salieri are rival composers, but the obviously manic Mozart keeps frustrating Salieri because of the surpassing beauty of his compositions while Salieri's are brilliant but not extraordinary.

"Key to Genius" gives a startling psychohistory of 4 geniuses including Mozart and Sir Iassic Newdon. Using source documents, we see contemporary reports of these geniuses which clearly fit the DSM-IV description of manic depressive illness. We see the inflated ego of Sir Iassic Newton not sleeping for a week. The remarkable 'vision' of Mozart's Jupiter symphony entirely conceived in a split second of insight.

This book leaves one with incredible insight as to the unromantic nature of the suffering of bipolar illness, yet gives one enormous respect towards the human spirit for those few who can harness its energy, and survive its dangers. Of course there are those who do
not survive, and the book shows that Van Gogh was bipolar, not schizophrenic. Yet before he succumbed to depression, he gave the world a legacy of art that supercedes any individual genius, and shows us the best of human nature and reminds us the genius in each of us. ... Read more

18. A Blur of Mass Motion: Reaching into the Poetry Written by a Teenager as She Battled Manic Depression--The Poetry and Writings of Erin Winona Flowers
by Phyllis Jean Flowers
Paperback: 239 Pages (2003-11)
list price: US$14.95 -- used & new: US$9.34
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0974432210
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Twenty years after her daughter's tragic death, Phyllis Jean Flowers brings to light a joyous collection of Erin Flowers' poetry. The book also contains a biography of Erin, describing her struggles with manic depression, and demonstrating her powerful faith in God. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars A review by Erin's father, biased of course
Much of Erin's writing conveys joy and love, but some is hard, coming from feelings of dread.Every time I re-read it, new thoughts arise, and more respect for Erin's short but intense life.Her death hurt; her writings heal.

5-0 out of 5 stars Inspiring story of a teen suffering from Bipolar disorder
Erin Flower's poetry from her early years is charming and delightfully innocent.From her teenage years, it is disturbing and thought provoking.She tries to reconcile her Christian faith with the disorder that is causing her so much mental anguish.

Her poetry is ordered in such a way that the reader is able to perceive Erin's growing feelings that something was not quite right with her.It is very disturbing to realize that medical science had not yet recognized her disorder as a mental illness and that several of the doctors consulted insisted that she stop trying to get attention.

The description of Erin's life, by Phyllis Jean Flowers, adds additional depth of understanding to Erin's conflicts.

I was very moved by the book and felt like I was actually viewing Erin's battle from close-up.I would highly recommend the book to anyone who suffers from Bipolar disorders (manic depression) or has to interact with someone who does. ... Read more

19. New Hope for People with Bipolar Disorder: Your Friendly, Authoritative Guide to the Latest in Traditional and Complementar y Solutions, Including: Proper ... of Depression & Manic-Depressive ...
by Jan Fawcett, Bernard Golden, Nancy Rosenfeld, Frederick K. Goodwin
Paperback: 352 Pages (2000-09-14)
list price: US$18.95 -- used & new: US$2.58
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0761530088
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Discover Exciting New Treatments For Bipolar Disorder
Now you can maintain control of your bipolar disorder and begin enjoying life again—today! This book dispels the myths and fears surrounding bipolar disorder. It offers compassionate, practical, and immediate guidance for anyone affected by this disorder. Inside, world-renowned experts present important, life-altering advances, including:
·The causes, symptoms, and patterns of bipolar disorder
·New medications
·The latest psychiatric findings
·Cutting-edge treatment models
·Complementary therapies that work
·Effective and practical tools for parenting your bipolar child
·And much more!
"This easy-to-read book demystifies the illness and teaches without scaring. A real addition to mental health literature!" —Alan F. Schatzberg, M.D., professor and chairman, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University
"This creative, authoritative, state-of-the-art book is an enormously valuable tool in dealing with depression. Written from three unique perspectives, it is certain to profoundly impact the lives of patients and their families." —Martin Keller, M.D., professor and chairman, Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, Brown University ... Read more

Customer Reviews (30)

5-0 out of 5 stars All that and a bag of chips
The book does exactly what it claims, it provides new hope in the form of practical and useful information.

5-0 out of 5 stars best bipolar book on sheveles
This is by far one of the most informative books on Bipolar Disorder.It's straight and to the point with tib bids of information for the family too.I highly recommend it to those who are seeking as much information as you can get and use it as a tool to educate your love ones.

5-0 out of 5 stars A different perspective
This book takes a different perspective on bipolar disorder.The book, while it has clinical elements, is not so cut and dried as many other books are on bipolar disorder.There is more discussion of the human impact of bipolar disorder, both on the patient and on their families and friends.I wish there were more books that really got into how this disease affects the people around the patient; most of them tend to concentrate on the patient, which is important, but bipolar disorder has an enormous impact on the families, friends and communities in which the patient lives.I really wish that the medical community would take that more into account and provide treatment plans that can involve the family and friends.

5-0 out of 5 stars A pearl
I am bipolar & highly recommend this book. It's one of the few that actually offer some hope. While reading the reviews, I've noticed most of the 4-5 star reviews are by people such as myself, who are also bipolar. Others who give it low ratings seem to use anonymous names & refer to the bipolar co-author as "loopy" and "illogical." These terms strike me as common, but ignorant, stereotypes. The pharmaceutical companies are obviously going to be unhappy with this book.
This is one of the few books I won't give away. However, I will buy it for friends & give it as a gift.

1-0 out of 5 stars Overly Explanatory with Examples by an Annoying Patient Recounted Throughout
This book includes basic information on mood disorders, including major depression, mania, and hypomania, all components of what used to be called manic-depression and is now known as bipolar disorder.

I found other books more helpful as far as scientific knowledge and explication.I found Kay Redfield Jamison's books insightful, inspiring, as well as incredibly knowledgeable.I found this book annoying, and it relied too heavily on the double whammy of an explanation or point made by one of the medical authors with a lay person follow-up by Nancy, a patient with bipolar disorder whose experiences and anecdotes are leaned on heavily throughout the book. In trying to warm up what they perhaps feared might be an overly objective, medical reference book, which it is far, far from being anyway, the authors used Nancy as a device to humanize the condition.

I got very tired of Nancy and her loopy examples.When not preening over the authors' attention as the pet subject of the book, she was just illogical and somewhat strident or annoying.She had a very definite "voice," which to me was loud and probably possessing a strong New York accent.I feel for Nancy and her experiences with this disorder, but her examples had no resonance for me and detracted from any actual information.

Go for Jamison definitely and browse through some other newer sources.Skip this one. ... Read more

20. Manic-Depression: Illness or Awakening
by Robert E. Kelly
 Hardcover: 266 Pages (1995-07)
list price: US$19.95 -- used & new: US$30.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0963945149
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (6)

5-0 out of 5 stars An alternative view
An excellent, well written book that provides some balance to the idea that bipolar mania is simply an abnormal mental disease. Provides some grounding and knowledge for those who have experienced spiritual "enlightenment" during their mania.

Best wishes to all bipolars searching for more insights and solutions.

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Attempt to Make is without Medication
This is an excellent account of a journey and struggle with Manic Depressive Illness. This book is in a conversational easy to read format. Robert keeps the interest of the reader from front to back cover of thisbook. Robert expressed all my fears, denial of the illness, and doubts. This book gave me a foundation on some of the things that can insight andepisode of mania.I am now attempting to devise my own fitness and dietplan to combat the illness.Thanks Robert.It is really unfortunate forothers struggling with the manic depression that this book is almostimpossible to obtain.I am happy I already own a copy.

5-0 out of 5 stars Review of Manic-Depression : Illness or Awakening
I read this book before it went out of print about 8 or 9 months ago.I felt that the author made some really good points.As a manic-depressive myself I felt good that he was able to function well enough to shelve themedication.I am working up to that myself.Like Kelly I don't feel thatthe Mental Health Establishment has all the answers in fact I think thatthat is far from the case.Often times they are trying to grasp the wind. Where Kelly and I differ is that I allow Christ to guide me and Kelly usesa host of other things like Eastern and Native American religious beliefsand the studying of some of the great minds of psychiatry in the past andpresent and a third thing being both yoga and TM. Like Kelly I want tocontrol my own destiny and I have strong beliefs just as he has even ifthey are different.It was great to see a book that was new and fresh fora change like this one was.I think Mr. Kelly is a bright light in adarkness that is the current Mental Health Establishment

5-0 out of 5 stars Author speaks from his own experience, not textbooks.
If you've tried and failed to get help from the psychiatric, psychological, self-help, etc. approach that assumes that something is wrong with you please read this book written by a man who speaks from hisown first-hand experience.He feels that what is commonly termedmanic-depression may not be an illness in every instance but may representan opportunity to break thru to a spiritual awakening and a new level ofconsciousness.The doctors mean well, but to a man with a hammereverything tends to look like a nail.Put down your hammer and try a newperspective.It may be just what you've been searching for.

5-0 out of 5 stars Spirtual Insight into Mental Illness
After years of suffering and being told that I was crazy, someone has finally written a book that untangles the mystery of manic-depression. Kelly has taken the blinders off and has given us a new way to understand.Walking us through his experience and logically sorting out the confusionthat surrounds this illness. No where else have I ever been validated formy own experiences and my own insights on what is happening to my mind. Ifanyone truly whats to understand their their experience this book is a mustread. ... Read more

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