Manic: A Memoir

manicAn attractive, highly successful Beverly Hills entertainment lawyer, Terri Cheney had been battling debilitating bipolar disorder for the better part of her life—and concealing a pharmacy’s worth of prescription drugs meant to stabilize her moods and make her "normal." In explosive bursts of prose that mirror the devastating mania and extreme despair of her illness, Cheney describes her roller-coaster existence with shocking honesty, giving brilliant voice to the previously unarticulated madness she endured. Brave, electrifying, poignant, and disturbing, Manic does not simply explain bipolar disorder—it takes us into its grasp and does not let go.

In MANIC, author Terri Cheney provides a fascinating glimpse into the experiences of someone suffering from Bipolar Disorder, AKA manic-depression. Rather than to narrate her story in a chronological fashion, Cheney presents each chapter as a stand-alone vignette from the chaos that is her life.

Furthermore, each of these individual stories serves to highlight a particular insight, from the depths of depression which prompt a suicide attempt to the fine line between the joys of hypomania versus the craziness of mania itself. Cheney does tend to repeat herself a bit--for example, she names several different medications as the "one" that finally helped her and claims various depressive episodes to be the "worst" she ever experienced. This book provides a captivating read for almost anyone but should particularly appeal to the many whose lives have been personally touched by manic-depression; my overall rating is 4 1/2 stars.

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