22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars
Thoroughly recommended, 13 Jan. 2012
This is an excellent and thought-provoking read. The Happy Depressive isn't another self-help book but then I don't think Alastair Campbell set out to write one of those. The book sees the author draw very candidly upon many of his own personal experiences, setting them in a context that will be recognised by most readers, whether or not their lives have been affected by mental illness. The book challenges the political classes to consider more carefully than ever before how policies impact the wellbeing of individuals, communities and countries. This is especially relevant in this period of austerity.
Where the book is particularly effective is in distinguishing between depression and unhappiness. Depression, like any other illness, pays no respect to relationships, income or lifestyle. If this book achieves just one thing, I hope it can help explain to sufferers and non-sufferers that a feeling of unhappiness is not the same as a state of depression and perhaps more importantly, depressives can feel great happiness. That's why the title of the book really works.
So I would thoroughly recommend this book to you if you suffer from depression or don't, if you are in a relationship with a sufferer or not, if you're a parent, a political animal or party animal! I hope this isn't the last time Alastair Campbell writes on these issues.