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A Mood Apart: The Thinker's Guide to Emotion and Its Disorders
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A Mood Apart: The Thinker's Guide to Emotion and Its Disorders

3.73  ·  Rating Details  ·  142 Ratings  ·  15 Reviews
"A compassionate exploration of depression and manic-depression."
-- Forecast

"The most thorough and wide-ranging discussion for lay readers about the interplay of the physical and emotional elements of depression and manic-depression... His presentation is illuminating, and the case histories demonstrate his sensitivity and skill as a clinician.... Whybrow's presentation
Paperback, 384 pages
Published February 17th 1998 by William Morrow Paperbacks (first published January 1st 1997)
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Mar 12, 2010 Catherine rated it it was amazing
Reading for added knowledge for the diagnoses etc. that I come across at work- it is incredibly well written and articulate. And fascinating. For anyone who wants to know more about mood disorders, depression and wants to write a truly literary book about such subjects.
Oct 12, 2013 Aiyana rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: psychology
Once I started this book I couldn't help wanting to finish it.

It's far from perfect: the author isn't Oliver Sacks but wishes he were, and is a little too keen to extoll the virtues of modern medicine while downplaying the perfectly good reasons why many patients have a hard time with psych meds, hospitalization, and other forms of treatment.

But overall: very good, insightful, and lyrical. Good balance of history, philosophy, personal stories, neuroscience, and practical advice-- all relating to
The author, a psychiatrist, attempts to explain to the lay person the physical causes of depression and mania and the way psychiatric drugs such as Prozac and Lithium work to keep these illnesses under control. He uses real-life examples of depressed and bipolar people to help the reader's understanding.

Considering that much of this book concerned brain chemistry, I thought it was reasonably understandable, and the style of writing mostly managed to avoid the denseness of a textbook. Whybrow add
Susan Barsy
Oct 27, 2013 Susan Barsy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: the-psyche
This is the single best book I have ever read about affective disorders (e.g. depression). The author is compassionate and a humanitarian, in addition to being a medical man who can (and does) describe the brain science of depression and how anti-depressive medicines work.

Moreover, he writes about the phenomenon of depression in a way that is nuanced, wide-ranging, and dignifying--encouraging readers to view depression as having real sources in loss and grief, and as something that can be concep
Aug 24, 2013 Lynne rated it really liked it
The science and research that informs treatment for mood disorders, manic depression in particular. Made me realize how specific some of the interventions are...and that the best outcome is from a combination of correctly chosen drugs, sometimes shock therapy, and talk therapy. This was published in 1997. I'm guessing there have been advances in treatment since then. My copy from 1997 had a different subtitle: "Depression, Mania, and Other Afflictions of the Self." I wonder why the change for th ...more
Mar 13, 2015 Evamaria rated it liked it
Shelves: 2015
I've been reading this book on and off for a long, long time, the subject requiring a very specific state of mind and often hitting rather close to home (not so much the parts about mania, but the descriptions of depression definitely felt familiar). It feels somewhat dated, but I actually found it interesting to learn about the earlier days of modern psychiatry (i.e. since the 70s) and the book covers a wide range of topics around mood disorders. The author has been working the field for decad ...more
Dec 09, 2011 Jenny rated it really liked it
Shelves: psychology-brain
Having lived with someone with bipolar (who was a poster child for keeping the disorder in check) and having met Peter Whybrow, this is a great book to read. It provides invaluable insight into the disease as well as other mental illnesses and how to navigate them. The most important thing to take away is that mental disorders require a three pronged approach. 1) self awareness and acknowledgement that you have the disease 2) therapy 3) consistent medication. If people don't embrace all three, t ...more
Aug 28, 2007 Andy rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anyone who has, or knows someone who has, Bipolar Disoder.
Shelves: psychiatry
An excellent book for anyone who has ever been forced to ask, "why?" This is one of the best books I've ever read on mood disorders. It's heart-felt, terrifying, and compassionate. It beautifully combines explanations of the science behind these disorders with the emotional impact they have on the sufferers and the people who love them.
This is a very good discussion of depression and mania and the ways they intersect. It's slightly dated now in terms of some of the theories regarding the causes of depression and bipolar disorder, but it's still a good treatment of the subject and gave me a lot to think about.
May 26, 2014 Ami rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2014
I read almost 200 pages of this highly technical tome, and then I just couldn't go any farther. Not particularly enjoyable or informative for people who are well-versed in bipolar disorder. 1.5 stars.
Nathan Sharpe
Feb 01, 2008 Nathan Sharpe rated it it was amazing
an excellent book that explains the processes of two very misunderstood diseases. i think this should be mandatory reading for everyone
Apr 03, 2011 Marcia rated it it was amazing
Compassionate and clinical, a recommended resource for survivors of a loved one's suicide.
Aug 08, 2010 Jill rated it really liked it
Shelves: mental-health
A dense book that discusses the chemical aspects of depression and manic depression (bipolarism).
Feb 25, 2013 Molly rated it really liked it
Shelves: psychology
Deeply informative and empathetic book about bipolar illness. Beautiful writing.
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