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on 12 January 2012
As an insomniac packing a Kindle this one hit my brain before 9.00am on the date of publication and I can certainly think of worse ways to start the day. Alistair Campbell is a proper journalist and writer with a refreshingly rigorous, honest and (thank heaven) unsentimental approach. If you want to know how he has climbed out of a crappy place and found a way of living that encompasses an intelligent and pragmatic approach to dealing with life's biggest questions read on. If you want to listen to some wierdo with hairy socks and sandals talking about how lighting a candle and writing a rude letter to the people who bullied you at school will heal your troubled soul this probably isn't the one for you. Personally I could listen to this man all day and I don't even agree with his politics - I certainly don't agree with his football loyalties....
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on 5 March 2017
I liked the honesty and sincerity revealing an innermost truth about himself, from a man whose perceived public success was 'spinning' for someone else. Read it - you will learn a lot about Alastair Campbell, the man, and a lot more about oneself.
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on 15 March 2017
Really very good and worth a read. To the point and thought provoking. A very enjoyable hour!
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on 16 April 2017
In fact I was quite angry, as I felt I'd been ripped off. Very short, not really a book at all, nor did I find it particularly interesting. His other books may be better; I will never know.
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on 23 January 2012
What is happiness? That's the question Alastair Campbell tries to answer in this searingly honest account of living with depression.
Yes, the politics and policies that can contribute to our happiness are examined, but the most moving sections are his personal battles with the down days.

It's hard not to read the part about his breakdown, without tears. The picture of this strong, clever man, reduced to piling his possessions on the floor, and being arrested, is heart-wrenching.

As Tony Blair's Director of Communications, he was a formidable figure in British politics. You may like him or loathe him. But few would deny that it takes huge guts to admit things like his battle with alcohol.

The methods for coping are in here too -- with an acknowledgment that they're not always foolproof.

And he writes openly about the nature of friendship and family, including the death of close friends, that will make you think carefully about what and whom you value in your life.

I was reading it on a grim, grey, wet January morning. When I finished, I looked out the window, and a patch of blue had appeared. Read this, it will make you think, and be happier.
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on 17 January 2012
I felt this was an honest and thoughtful account by Alastair Campbell . I have to admit this was the first e book I have bought and wondered whether it would live up to my expectations and it certainly did. From the moment Alastair stated he wondered why he had been chosen to do a happiness lecture , I knew I wanted to find out and to find out what he felt. I wasn't disappointed. I found it an emotional journey , where I cried and laughed at times with his honest approach to his life . I thought , yes I feel like that at times !! I enjoy books that make me think , one's I can relate to and this book had all this. I don't want to give too much away as sometimes reviews can reveal too much. What I do say is , I recommend his book and I am sure you will enjoy the book as much as I did.
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I was lucky enough to hear Alastair Campbell give "The Happiness Lecture" in Birmingham last year, and reading this e-book reminded me just how much I'd enjoyed the lecture at the time. Although this is short, Campbell has much to say about his two main themes. Firstly, the role governments should play in happiness creation, and secondly, how and when individuals can be truly happy. Of course, Campbell's work as a journalist and within government and also his struggle with depression mean that his is a view that is worth listening to. He is very willing to draw on personal experiences to develop his arguments whether about the trial of following a football team that plays four hours away from where you live, the sheer panic of suffering a breakdown or the emotions felt watching a dear friend die of cancer. As others have noted, it continues Campbell's efforts break down the taboo about mental illness but it is also much much more. This is a quick read, packed with insight and I thoroughly recommend it as an antidote to the materialism and short-term gratification we all too often mistake for happiness.
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on 19 June 2015
Rarely do you get someone so closely involved in politics and the press with such a genuine, warts'n'all opinion without preaching or sounding false. Campbell manages to convey the Utopia of an idealistic society based on happiness values rather than economic ones, as an achievable and realistic aim. Why not? We need to get back to basic human values rather than the false ones of greed and selfishness. Campbell writes in a way that you can identify with the challenges and feelings he has been through to a point when you feel that maybe our values could change and become more society based and genuine. We need an idealistic politician to be brave enough and strong enough to realise it though. Chances of that? Slim. Alastair - thanks for the refreshing honesty and for expressing opinions that probably more people believe in than you might realise. Here's to happiness!
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on 9 June 2015
Reading this book was a very moving and deeply personal experience. As one who suffers from clinical depression (thankfully, I'm moving on from my 'train crash' but I'll always regard myself as a depressive), I could relate to so much of what Alastair Campbell was saying in this book. I found myself smiling a lot, not in response to feelings of happiness but in recognition and understanding of his feelings and experiences. One of the similarities (and I did think this was something peculiar to me) is Alastair's tendency to cry easily. Perhaps it's a trait common to clinical depressives. I cry when I'm depressed, I cry when I'm happy, I cry when, like Alastair, I witness the success and triumph of others, tears roll down my cheeks when I listen to beautiful music...tears are never far away.

I commend Alastair's candour and openness. For me, putting it out there has been cathartic (I blog on the subject of depression, under a 'nom de plume', but it would be inappropriate for me to refer to the name of the blog in this review). That, for me, has been liberating and I'm sure that Alastair feels the same way. I also publicised my story to help other sufferers appreciate that they aren't alone, that there is light at the end of the tunnel, and also to shine a light on the issue for those who still don't 'get it'. I have no doubt that Alastair has done the same.

Alastair's story illustrates the mistake we make when we judge a book by its cover (pun unintended). To the unsuspecting eye, Alastair Campbell is a man who has it all. Success and achievement personified, yes, but happy, 'sorted', comfortable in his own skin, at one with the world, no!
Clinical depression is an illness. Sufferers can no more pull themselves together than can an asthmatic pull him/herself together and breathe properly without an inhaler, no easier than can a diabetic pull him/herself together and get out of that coma without medical intervention. A person can have what outsiders think is everything, great physical health, job success, money, beautiful wife, gorgeous kids and be as depressed as the person who has none of it.

Thanks, Alastair. Sufferers, you are not alone. 'Outsiders', read, open your mind and try to understand.
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on 30 January 2012
This is one of the BEST books i have ever read, it is well worth purchasing you will NOT be disappointed Buy it now it is an Amazing read !! My favorite book of ALL time remains ALL IN THE MIND by the same Author again a must read book !!!!
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