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A Prison of Lies: A Journey Through Madness Paperback – 23 May 2012


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Product details

  • Paperback: 474 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; 2 edition (23 May 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1490593381
  • ISBN-13: 978-1490593388
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 3 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 4,607,281 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

As this fiction is inspired by his own struggle with mental illness Robert Thomas Doran is grateful to god for helping him recover from mental illness. Today he lives in Pennsylvania with his wife of fifteen years. A Prison of Lies was written as an act of faith and with the hope of helping others afflicted with mental illness. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This book throws you into the world of mental illness showing how painful events and memories can build up inside of you and can spiral completely out of control. The book can be read by people who have never suffered mental health issues and want to take a peak inside to try and understand and also by those who have already suffered similar difficulties, which in turn may bring this usually unspoken subject to light.

The author's own mental illness has been developed into this fully detailed story, full of raw emotion, following a young man named Tom through his development from a youth into a grown man. Completely unsupported, both mentally and physically, by his peers who are such a domineering factor, they seemed more concerned about what other people thought than to really help him through such a tough hormonal time where he needed guidance with so many questions and feelings. He struggles on isolated, feeling that he is unworthy, constantly doubting himself, not fitting in, with resentment, confusion and anger building within him.

Tom finally meets a girl called Mary, who seems to accept him and he feels accepted by her family and you almost feel relief for him until the he realizes that things are not what they first appear to be, leaving him in the end completely at a loss. more confused and feeling like he is being dangled from a very long piece of string. The family may think they are trying to do the right thing by their daughter Mary but not realizing the long lasting effect it would have on Tom. The silent, gradual build up of hatred within himself and for those around him slowly gets worse.

To get a real sense of what the book is about in certain parts the author uses strong and very descriptive language which requires an open mind.
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By aiesa1 on 12 Feb. 2014
Format: Paperback
A "REAL Feel" trip with the author as he combats depths of a void that seems like there will be no end to the struggles and despair. Instead of choosing a way out of his life altogether, we follow as he keeps thoughts of suicide at bay...and while he is also creating a learning process to overcome the pain and cruelty that has befallen him. He learns to let the past be just that... the PAST. Tom must maintain a reality of what was and what is necessary to become a functioning enlightened person. 'Prison of Lies' is presented in a real life personality. I have been in constant turmoil concerning a family member's depth of despair and I must say this book has helped me understand some of what could be going through her mind. Possibly even help me support her in a new way. I think this book should be read by all professional therapists.
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By ChristophFischerBooks TOP 500 REVIEWER on 20 Oct. 2013
Format: Paperback
"A Prison of Lies: A Journey Through Madness" by Robert Thomas Doran was an intense but also a compelling and very rewarding reading experience for me.
The author has fictionalised his story of ill mental health, having changed details where necessary, but maintaining the concept of a memoir and realism.
The first chapters give us an insight into the background of Tom: His unloving parents, his socially unsuccessful childhood, the lack of friends, the overbearing indoctrination by his parents, the lack of emotional acceptance and lack of reciprocation of loving and erotic feelings through adolescence.
Through the foreword and introduction the reader is pointed towards a professional psychological reading of the situation, a dissociation of an alter ego and an obsessive behaviour that develops in Tom gradually over the course of his lonely and cruel childhood. Without a frame of reference he develops alternate realities and soon an inner dialogue runs parallel to the outer interactions with the world.
When Tom meets Mary he becomes strongly attached to her and when the romance does not go the way he wishes and she starts to let him down his mind becomes filled with aggressive dreams and fantasies.
Written in uncommented transcription of dialogue and separate 'telling' of the story this is as close to subjectivity as the author can get. The fantasies and dreams are honest and raw and may be uncomfortable for some readers. I found the glimpse into the mind important for the work to see the discrepancy between the two world - imagined and real, and to be challenged myself into the blur between fantasy and reality that the 'patient' seems to go through.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 8 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
What mental illness looks like from the inside 21 Jan. 2013
By Robert C. La Mont - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book is not an “easy read”. It is however the first time I have every gotten and inkling about what a person suffering from mental illness is going through. The book begins and ends with the therapist’s technical, clinical description of the author’s illness. This is what we usually hear and think we know what it means. But, the reality of what is going on inside the head of the sufferer is another story altogether. This book is that story. It is difficult to read the cycles of obsessive illogic and compulsion. These you want to scream, step back and get some perspective. But, we learn of the well-meaning friends and practioners and quacks who the author went to before he found some help in a well qualified professional. It is painful to witness how the steps toward recovery are so small and so slow. And yet, on the final page of the book we do see recover. It is a book of hope, but a very hard earned hope.

I would recommend this book for anyone who has a loved one suffering from mental illness who would like to know what is going on. I would also hope that it could be offered to young people. When I was young, I assumed that mental illness was rare, but in the last 58 years I have met it many times. At first I had no idea what I was encountering. If I had read this book at 18 I might have known what the signs were and had a better idea of how to offer help. I would have been better prepared for life and been of more use to people who were dear to me.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Excitingly dark and gripping read 27 July 2012
By Tamarkin20 - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Robert Doran has painted a gripping, detailed mural of the progression of mental health illness that's reminiscent of other greats reads like Running with Scissors. Doran's captivating story moves us through the torn canvas of a damaged youth, the downward spiral that ended in a nervous breakdown during the protagonist's early adulthood, and his courageous yet painstaking road to recovery. The detail that Doran captures is frighteningly exciting and I found myself absorbed in his character's experience. The dark world he depicts within the mind of the protagonist and about mental health illness will introduce people to ways of thinking that are rarely spoken of out loud. Moreover, the book promises the idea that such problems can be overcome. A great read!
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Heart wrenching 27 Mar. 2013
By A. L. Reis - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Someone shared this book with me - I think there was an ad for it in Shelf Magazine. I can't remember which one, but I remember thinking that the cover seemed nothing at all like the title. And at the time, the kindle was only $3.99 but the paperback was something crazy like $34. Needless to say, I got the Kindle version.

On the whole, I wasn't sure if I liked this book until I was done with it. It didn't feel like a mental health problem until all these vignettes started to come together. It's hard to imagine what life must be like inside a world where your thinking cascades into distortion. And it doesn't happen right away. If you have a loved one who might be suffering and you're trying to grasp what their reality might be like, this is a decent way to get an idea, as well as provide hope and support. Not a complex book, not a self-help either, really, but it's worth reading for the depth of emotion.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Deep & Informative 25 Feb. 2014
By Becca Wilson - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This story was one that I could not relate to on a personal level like a lot of other books that I have read, but it was an extreme eye opener into the world of someone that has a mental illness. I don’t necessarily think you have to know a lot about mental illness ot have a need to know about it in order to enjoy this novel. Tom has had problems fitting in for the majority of his life, but now that he has moved on to college he is more aware that he is different from other people around him. He meets Mary and he immediately falls for her. He is unable to cope when things start to go badly and he loses all sense of himself and touch with reality. I likethat the book was centered around the process of thoughts that Tom was having about everything around him and not told from another point of view. In a way, it made it deeper for me as a reader to get in touch with him as a character. This was his life and we as readers were experiencing it head on.

I have never really known much about someone who suffers with mental illness but my sister has hydrocephalus, which affects her growth level on some level but not her mental capacity. I had to deal with people making fun of her simply because they did not understand. I think that if more people were aware of illnesses, mental or not, and what makes the people with them tick, the world would be a much more understanding and compassionate place. My heart was saddened many times during this novel but you can only help to fight in your mind for things to go better for Tom. This is not a read to be taken lightly in any sense of the word. There is sexual content and some language and violence. If any of this would offend you along the way this book may not be for you, but I highly recommend it.

It was definitely a different genre than I was used to reading, but everyone needs a little variety in their life. I struggled a little but I loved the lessons that were taught in the message. I recommend this to anyone that wants to know more about what the day to day life of someone with a mental illness is like because the author makes it very clear to understand what you would be going through.

I received this book to review through Beck Valley Books Book Tours, all the opinions above are 100% my own.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
This book throws you into the world of mental illness 14 Feb. 2014
By beckvalleybooks - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This book throws you into the world of mental illness showing how painful events and memories can build up inside of you and can spiral completely out of control. The book can be read by people who have never suffered mental health issues and want to take a peak inside to try and understand and also by those who have already suffered similar difficulties, which in turn may bring this usually unspoken subject to light.

The author's own mental illness has been developed into this fully detailed story, full of raw emotion, following a young man named Tom through his development from a youth into a grown man. Completely unsupported, both mentally and physically, by his peers who are such a domineering factor, they seemed more concerned about what other people thought than to really help him through such a tough hormonal time where he needed guidance with so many questions and feelings. He struggles on isolated, feeling that he is unworthy, constantly doubting himself, not fitting in, with resentment, confusion and anger building within him.

Tom finally meets a girl called Mary, who seems to accept him and he feels accepted by her family and you almost feel relief for him until the he realizes that things are not what they first appear to be, leaving him in the end completely at a loss. more confused and feeling like he is being dangled from a very long piece of string. The family may think they are trying to do the right thing by their daughter Mary but not realizing the long lasting effect it would have on Tom. The silent, gradual build up of hatred within himself and for those around him slowly gets worse.

To get a real sense of what the book is about in certain parts the author uses strong and very descriptive language which requires an open mind. The thoughts, dark fantasies and dreams in the book may offend some readers but as this is a true account of mental illness I feel that this reinforces the story to the reader.

I feel that the author has been very courageous in putting pen to paper on such a difficult subject. The author's well written descriptive story will bring out a number of emotions as you read it including frustration, anger and there were a couple of times I literally wanted to throw the book at the wall as the author was describing events and the repetitive destructive cycle Tom was in, growing stronger with each thought.

The book makes you rethink how you talk and treat others, how a simple look at the wrong time or a rushed reply to someone may be portrayed incorrectly. It especially made me think about my two boys and how they take so much on board at such a young age and how it may affect them in future years.
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