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4.5 out of 5 stars
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4.5 out of 5 stars
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on 7 November 2004
Having dealt most of my life with Manic-Depression, this is one of the better books to read, both from the Doctor's point of view as well as one that is living with the situation. I wish it would have touched a little more on the why it happens but thankfully there are several boos out there that explain the why's such as:
Skywriting, Brilliant Madness and Nightmares Echo.
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on 2 September 2004
This was the first book I read about Bipolar Affective Disorder (Manic Depression) after my own diagnosis and near loss of my own life! I found that at times it was like looking in the mirror as Kay and I seemed to be sharing so many experiences. It helped me to understand what was happening to me and it helped friends and family to understand the illness and why I had behaved in such bizarre ways in the past. I wasn't alone - when I first purchased the book I had to give up university because I just couldn't function with the disorder - now like the author, I'm back at university, and this time as a mature student training as a registered nurse (mental health). Definately a book worth reading if you have BP or are supporting someone who is!
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on 5 September 2004
Its really nice to read something that makes you feel less alone. Her experiences are different from mine but the feelings that go with them the same. Its good to know others understand all that hard to explain stuff. Kay Jamison is a remarkable person, and has fully dedicated herself to unraveling the bipolar beast. Thank you Dr Jamison.
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on 21 May 2007
An excellent read, a remarkable account of a journey through manic-depressive illness. Anyone diagnosed with manic-depression or has an interest will find this a moving, eye opening and inspiring book. Kay Jamison's shares her honest heartfelt thoughts and feelings, a lady to be truly admired.
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on 11 May 2001
I am very grateful to Ms Jamison for giving me such a clear, open and honest guide to an illness of which I knew so little, even though I have seen the effects it can have on people.
It is a wonderful thing that we are living in an age when a broader and deeper understanding of mental illness is gradually entering the public consciousness. I hope this process will continue and we should be extremely grateful to writers like Ms Jamison for assisting us.
She is prepared to talk openly about her own situation - a tremendously brave action - without self-dramatizing or seeking sympathy. If you are wavering about whether to buy this or not, just go ahead. You will ever be the wiser for it.
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on 27 April 2008
This memoir is compelling reading. I have found it to be frank and honest as well as informative. I had a friend, sadly no longer with us, who was manic depressive and I found reading this a way of understanding who he was.

Kay Jamison writes about her life from seventeen - when she had her first attack of manic depression - through to her life now as an adult over twenty years later. It is an extremely well written account and whilst it is factual and often distressing to read I actually enjoyed it. It shows not only her courage but her determination to succeed at life with an illness that almost killed her.

I couldn't actually put this book down and read it in the course of one day, over a series of sittings. This book must be of help for people who don't know how to deal with their own turmoil at the hands of this illness and likewise for those whose lives are affected by it. It doesn't have a text book feel about it but nor does it feel lightweight.

I can't recommend this book enough!
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on 3 September 2000
An excellent account of bi-polar disorder, without the sensationalist aspect that I found with "Prozac Nation". An account of an intelligent, hardworking woman who becomes ill, and struggles to remain normal, refusing to accept what has happened to her. No self-pity, just the facts. Well worth a read for sufferers and those interested in bi-polar/manic depression. Enlightening for those who care for sufferers.
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on 24 January 2003
this book leads you through the ups and the downs of a life gripped by manic-depressive illness. it provides a fascinating look at the illness as only someone that lives with it every day can provide. far from being a sad account, it is upbeat and shows that the illness can be coped with. not only a look at the illness but at the wonderfully interesting life led by the author.
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on 29 August 2007
You will not find any book other than this that explains what bipolar is all about. It is my bible. The book follows Kay's story and if you suffer with bipolar you can definitely relate to everything. This will also be helpful to those around you as it will help them gain a better understanding.

IF YOU SUFFER FROM BIPOLAR YOU WILL FIND THIS VERY HELPFUL
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on 10 July 2006
This book is a truly inspirational account of one woman`s battle with manic depression/bipolar affective disorder. It will strike chords of pain, suffering, confusion but most of all hope that anybody who suffers or knows s`body who does will feel with alarming alacrity. Laugh, cry, understand and HOPE![...]
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