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But Inside I'm Screaming

3.43  ·  Rating Details ·  2,430 Ratings  ·  245 Reviews
Isabel Murphy has it all, but when she freezes on air while reporting on the death of Princess Diana, it is clear her life is not as it appears to viewers. With the television network furious and knowing she's let everyone down, she attempts suicide and ends up in a psychiatric facility. With persistence, her therapists begin to help her examine the source of her pain and ...more
Paperback, 316 pages
Published September 1st 2005 by Mira Books (first published September 1st 2003)
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Community Reviews

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Valerie Penny
May 01, 2015 Valerie Penny rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
But Inside I'm Screaming by Elizabeth Flock was a really good read. I enjoyed it thoroughly, although perhaps it is not a book to be enjoyed. It is possibly more accurate to say that I connected with the book.

The main character is Isabel Murphy who is a successful international broadcast journalist, loving wife, perfect daughter but suicidal human. She freezes up on national television while trying to cover the breaking news of car crash in which Princess Diana died. Following this, Isabel finds
Mar 28, 2008 Melissa rated it did not like it
I thought this book was so annoying. Seriously, how many times do you need to say "adirondack chair"... I mean, is the type of chair you sit and smoke in THAT important? No. I get it. You sit in adirondack chairs. Also, it was so unoriginal. Think a crappy and way less interesting version of "Girl, Interrupted" (or any similar 'I'm in the psych ward but I shouldn't be' book). I was bored and unimpressed.
Sep 24, 2016 Lynn rated it really liked it
This book was so much better than I expected it to be. Isabel Murphy is a reporter who has a break down while covering a huge story live on air. After a suicide attempt, she seeks treatment at Three Breezes, a psychiatric hospital. There she must come to terms with all the events in her life that brought her here.
This book shines an unsparing light on mental illness in its many forms and its cruel impact on people's lives as depicted by the other patients with whom Isabel is being treated. What
Oct 31, 2011 Melissa rated it liked it
So this could have been a very interesting book. It had all the right elements and a main character that could have been compelling. But sadly it had no depth to it, and things were "told" instead of "shown."

Isabel breaks down on live television and as a result, heads home to commit suicide. She doesn't quite succeed though and finds herself transported to the mental institution of Three Breezes. Here she doesn't feel as if she belongs with the other patients. She doesn't think she's quite craz
Meet Isabel: successful international broadcast journalist, loving wife, perfect daughter, suicidal human.

After freezing up on national television while trying to cover the breaking news of Princess Diana's car crash, Isabel finds herself at Three Breezes, a top of the line psychiatric hospital. She has no idea why she's there. Maybe it's the two suicide attempts? The meltdown on live TV? The point is, she isn't like any of those other patients who are seriously crazy. She just wants to be rele
I keep a couple of stacks of paperbacks piled up on my nightstand, which is actually a bookcase, for those "just in case" moments when I either don't have anything to read or don't like what I've been reading or just need a break from something heavier. This book was in that stack, or one of them, picked up quite awhile ago from a Friends of the Library sale cart. I pick things up for all kinds of reasons, the title, a review I've read, a recommendation from friends or goodreads, because I saw i ...more
Apr 04, 2009 Louise rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction
I'm a little disappointed in this book after having read "Me & Emma". Totally different stories I understand and very different subject matters. However, I just didn't get an overall feeling of "ahhhh, THAT was a good novel!" Nonetheless, I did finish it. Perhaps it was the fact that I've just finished reading "A Million Little Pieces" and hearing about and reading all the surrounding hoopla and controversy surrounding that book! Halfway through this book I quickly lost interest and thought ...more
What i liked best about this novel about a woman who suffers a breakdown and is admitted to a psychiatric hospital is the difference between Isabel and the other patients. Isabel is suffering from severe depression, whereas most of the other patients are suffering from illnesses like manic depression/bipolar disorder or schizophrenia. So because of the other patients' bouts of mania, paranoia, etc, Isabel is completely indignant as to why she is among them as, compared to them, she feels 'normal ...more
AJ LeBlanc
Dec 17, 2008 AJ LeBlanc rated it it was amazing
Meet Isabel: successful international broadcast journalist, loving wife, perfect daughter, suicidal human.

After freezing up on national television while trying to cover the breaking news of Princess Diana's car crash, Isabel finds herself at Three Breezes, a top of the line psychiatric hospital. She has no idea why she's there. Maybe it's the two suicide attempts? The meltdown on live TV? The point is, she isn't like any of those other patients who are seriously crazy. She just wants to be relea
Feb 16, 2015 Jool rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
I found this to be a great read. Told in first person and flashbacks, this describes a young woman's mental breakdown and subsequent admission to a psychiatric hospital. I found this intriguing, told from the point of view of the patient herself.
Feb 24, 2015 Connie rated it it was amazing
I could not put this book down! I read it in one sitting. A captivating look at what mental illness must look like and feel like. Very well written and keeps you hooked from the start.
Jun 01, 2014 Rebecca rated it it was amazing
But Inside I'm Screaming was a really interesting book about Isabel a reporter who has a breakdown during her segment on the news channel during the tragedy of Princess Diana. She is then booked into a physicist tic hospital called a Three Breezes. At first Isabel wants nothing to do with the program or the building. But soon she begins to meet new people and really open up about her issues which include her failed relationship,her stressful job and her family dynamics and many more. Isabel thou ...more
Mar 17, 2016 Brooke rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I read this book quickly, but I did not enjoy it. The main character, Isabel, is a news reporter, who checks into a mental institution following a 'break down' on live television, and an attempted suicide. She apparently faces depression, anxiety and low-self esteem, but none of these seem true. I don't think the author has any real experience with these things, as they seem forced and unbelievable.

While at the institution, Isabel meets several other patients who face various mental illnesses.
Kathie Giorgio
Jun 11, 2015 Kathie Giorgio rated it liked it
Well, let's first look at this book this way. It's a book about a woman who has a breakdown and ends up in a mental institution called Three Breezes. In the book, there is:

the main character, a woman with Daddy issues
a full crew of crazy folks
the understanding therapist
the overworked maligned group therapist
the nurse who is a jerk
the nurse who is a cheerleader

In other words, the usual line-up of characters in a psych ward novel. I was so disappointed. Because the book led with the main character
Sean Whelan
Aug 15, 2013 Sean Whelan rated it really liked it
Not sure how I came across this book but glad I did. TV personality suffers a breakdown whole covering princess Diana and we follow her story of treatment in a mental ward with many troubled people in with her. There remains such a stigma with mental illness and a book that sheds light on the issue is welcomed.
Apr 23, 2016 rainandreads rated it did not like it
Shelves: 2016
I don't understand why this book was published. The main character was horrible. Here are just a few examples of our lovely "Isabel"

About her psychiatrist: "she's been smiling at me a lot lately... she gay or something?"

On a fellow patient in the institution: "With those headphones on she looks like a black Princess Leia."

And the very worst... "She had this freaky thing happen to her with the limo driver- I still don't know what went on there."

This "freaky thing" that happened was a female patie
Nov 02, 2014 Becky rated it really liked it
Shelves: hard-copy
I read this book during my flights home from vacation. It felt like such a quick read. I have other books by Emma Flock but, this is the first one that I have read.

Isabel Murphy had been living a fast paced life as a broadcast journalist, loving wife, and perfect daughter. When she suffers a mental breakdown on live television, she makes a suicide attempt that lands her in the "nut hut". This story follows Isabel through her journey to the depths of severe depression and the path to recovery.

Sep 30, 2016 Laura rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book portrays really well several mental illnesses. I loved the complexity of it. It was cruel and realistic, but hopeful too.
May 25, 2007 Christina rated it really liked it
I guess I like stories with mental institutions. I really liked this one, shows how a person with a seemingly easy life can fall apart
Jun 30, 2016 Heather rated it liked it
This was an interesting read about a woman living in a psychiatric institute after a nervous breakdown whilst reporting the death of Princess Diana. While I liked the premise of the book, I felt it lacked depth. I would liked to have had more character development and been given a deeper insight into Isabel's battle with depression and suicidal tendencies. Also, I was left wondering how her relationship with Alex finished after being glimpses of domestic violence. An interesting insight into the ...more
Melissa Lee-Tammeus
Mar 10, 2014 Melissa Lee-Tammeus rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: borrowed
This kind of book is right up my alley as far as fiction is concerned. Seemingly together woman falls apart at her job, tries to take her own life, and ends up in a mental hospital. Think One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest from a woman's perspective with a bit more action on the side of therapy and much more modern. If you are interested in the role of the psyche and how we come back from difficult spaces, this is the book for you. A great look at the degrees of mental illness and the hope of worki ...more
Apr 14, 2014 Leslie rated it really liked it
Pretty honest book! If you ever wondered what it might be like to be severely depressed, and I mean severely, this is a really good depiction. Some people may be put off by the italicized inner thoughts of Isabel, but I found it to be a pretty relatable attitude. While she is feeling like she doesn't belong there, in the inpatient hospital, she is critical of the other patients in really mean ways. When she gets better, she still has those thoughts, but her perspective is different and healthier ...more
Mar 04, 2015 Aimee rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 01, 2010 Sharon rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mental-health
"But Inside I'm Screaming" is a great read for Mental Health Awareness Month (every May).

Protagonist Isabel Murphy is a successful newscaster for a major network. Her personal life, with a demanding mother, absent father and abusive husband, is a shambles. Her breakdown takes place on national television as she attempts to report on Princess Diana's death. She goes home from her failed broadcast, attempts suicide, and is committed to an inpatient mental hospital.

Isabel and her fellow patients ar
Oct 22, 2010 Leah rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-read-2010
On the night Princess Diana is killed in a car accident in Paris, Isabel Murphy finds herself propelled onto live television, just waiting to make a statement to the public regarding Diana’s accident. However when the time comes for her to go live on-air, Isabel clams up and seems to break down. After trying to kill herself she voluntarily checks herself into a psychiatric hospital in the hopes of overcoming her breakdown. The question is: what drove Isabel to unravel live on television?

I’ve bee
Dec 20, 2011 Sydney rated it liked it
This book was a bit of a surprise for me. I wasn't sure I would like it, as the subject matter is a bit heavy. A network news anchor has a breakdown on live TV while reporting on the death of Princess Diana. She attempts suicide and ends up in an inpatient psychiatric treatment facility. Not exactly easy material. But the story moved very quickly. Isabel can't see that she has serious mental issues so she fights the treatment. Once she reaches the very depths of despair, her doctor suggests shoc ...more
Rhonda Rae Baker
May 05, 2010 Rhonda Rae Baker rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a great novel addressing the craziness that we sometimes get ourselves into, especially when we are prone to think of others only and not consider our own needs in life.

Something happen to a person that is entirely focused on pleasing others. I'm all too aware of this and could understand exactly what Ms. Flock was talking about. She portrayed her characters on-spot and I would have to agree with the symptoms and dialogue they shared with each other. Very interesting and enlightening as
Aug 07, 2013 Kate rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What happened to Isabel? An upcoming news anchor with a bright future freezes on camera. Unable to bear the shame of her failure and ridicule of her colleagues, she takes a blade to her wrists.
She is saved; committed to a hospital, sharing a living space with people who don’t have it together. She doesn’t think she’s like them. She has dark thoughts, but she can control them. Can’t she?
What brought her here?
Readers may find this story weaker than that of Girl, Interrupted. In fact, the story se
Bel Vidal
Nov 16, 2013 Bel Vidal rated it it was ok
Isabel is a high achieving, successful woman who falls pray to depression and ends up in a mental hospital after a very public breakdown (on live TV).
I am interested in this subject matter which is what motivated me to pick up this book. I know about depression. I have dealt with depression. I have written about depression. However, this book was too depressive even for me. There is no humour or lightness in it. Isabel was a very unsympathetic character, and she has very little sympathy or time
Susan O'Bryant
Feb 24, 2011 Susan O'Bryant rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
I was prepared to not like this book. I was afraid it would be simplified or cliched, or both; however, I was pleased to discover this novel was neither. Isabel, the heroine, says "People look at me and they see this happy face, but inside I'm screaming. It's just that no one hears me." Who hasn't felt like that from time to time? Most of us are just lucky enough to not spiral down into the mental health crisis that Isabel faced. While I write this review, I am having to restrain from referring ...more
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Former print journalist Elizabeth Flock reported for TIME and PEOPLE magazines before becoming an on-air correspondent for CBS News. Her acclaimed debut novel, BUT INSIDE I'M SCREAMING, chronically the psychological struggles of a young television reporter in New York, was released in 2003. Her second novel, ME & EMMA, became a New York Times bestseller and was an Indiebound (formerly Booksen ...more
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“You tell yourself to someone and they steal your soul. That's why I don't talk to anybody.” 32 likes
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