by David Lovelace

Reviewer Rating:


With bipolar disorder directly in the limelight, thanks to television shows such as Homeland, I've received increased numbers of requests at the reference desk for material on the disorder.  So, I picked up David Lovelace's memoir on the subject.  Lovelace describes how bipolar disorder affects four of his five family members, including himself, so I felt I'd found a reputable source, or at least an informed one. 

Lovelace's memoir is compassionate and humorous, honest and informative, and understandably grim and hopeless.  At times difficult to read because of Lovelace's detailed description of his depressed phases, it was nonetheless compelling.  Lovelace was gentle with his subjects, giving family members, the Protestant church, and well-meaning friends ample grace when including them in his narrative.  He was also gentle with his readers, including comic relief in his otherwise dark narrative, with such unlikely events as his father collecting tropical snakes. 

For those looking for an original and authentic depiction of bipolar disorder, or simply for a poignant memoir, I highly recommend Lovelace's Scattershot.

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