Book 38 – Manic Kingdom by Dr Erin Stair

Could that disheveled young woman – rooting around in the trash for potatoes and clothes – possibly be a med student? The unthinkable becomes reality when you are seduced by the Manic Kingdom. It can upend your seemingly pitch-perfect existence, thrusting you into a world where your inhibitions, intellect, and instincts are powerless to save you. Join Dr. Erin Stair on the journey of a lifetime. Based on a true story, Becka is on the verge of becoming a doctor, immersed in the world of physical and mental illness, while her own mental health was crumbling. Travel with her 3,000 miles away to California, where she fled from her school, her roommate and her life, finding romance and companionship with a mysterious man known only to her as “King.” King was helpful to her in many ways, but was she ignoring warning signs that disaster was right around the corner? Manic Kingdom is a frightening, sometimes humorous, essential reminder of how we can lose ourselves, how dangerous we can be to ourselves, and how fragile stability can be.

Book 36 – Also Human: The Inner Lives of Doctors by Catherine Elton

A psychologist’s stories of doctors who seek to help others but struggle to help themselves.

From ER and M*A*S*H to Grey’s Anatomy and House, the medical drama endures for good reason: we’re fascinated by the people we must trust when we are most vulnerable. In Also Human, vocational psychologist Caroline Elton introduces us to some of the distressed physicians who have come to her for help: doctors who face psychological challenges that threaten to destroy their careers and lives, including an obstetrician grappling with his own homosexuality, a high-achieving junior doctor who walks out of her first job within weeks of starting, and an oncology resident who faints when confronted with cancer patients. Entering a doctor’s office can be terrifying, sometimes for the doctor most of all. By examining the inner lives of these professionals, Also Human offers readers insight into, and empathy for, the very real struggles of those who hold power over life and death.

Mental Health Book Review: A Bitter Pill to Swallow by Tiffany Gholar

Our Review

Overall rating:

Sydney’s rating:

Becky’s rating:

The Harrison School helps children and teenagers struggling with their mental health to continue with their education whilst being treated for the issues that they are experiencing. At the school, we meet Janina who has been diagnosed with depression and has been at the school for four years and is afraid to leave the schools safety.

Devante has been a witness to a life changing traumatic shooting in which the girl he cared about lost her life and he is finding life difficult. He attempts suicide but is stopped and decides to enrol at the Harrison School. Devante is diagnosed with acute stress disorder and he meets Janina. Their friendship helps them both on their journey to recovery.

As a result of a new addition to the Harrison School team is given a select group of students to look after and as a result starts to question Janina’s diagnosis. After investigation and new research it is decided that Janina is not mentally unwell but has been mis-diagnosed because the people around her failed to acknowledge her intellect. Showing that the labels we take on are fluid and can change over time.

Whilst at the Harrison School Devante begins to see that there are others in a similar situation to him, he is not alone and there are other people who are in a worst position than him.

This book shows the differences between different mental health conditions and their durations. It also shows the fluidity of mental health diagnosis and that labels are not necessarily everything and that treating teenagers as people has a huge beneficial effect.

Listen to our full review at:
Mental Health Book Club Episode 15

Episode 15 – A Bitter Pill to Swallow

Find out more at www.mentalhealthbookclub.com

Trigger warning: this podcast discusses suicide, self-harm and violence with guns.

Get the book here

If you feel suicidal call 999 immediatly.

Research Study

www.childcaregiverstudy.co.uk

Contact: r.bishop@herts.ac.uk | Tweet

If you need to talk you can contact:

Samaritans on

Mental Health Resources:

Rethink Mental Illness

Mind The Mental Health Charity

  • Infoline: 0300 123 3393 (Our lines are open 9am to 6pm, Monday to Friday (except for bank holidays)
  • Text: 86463
  • http://bit.ly/2p6rntK

Book 7 – A Bitter Pill to Swallow by Tiffany Gholar

Book Blurb

Winner of the 2016 Chicago Writers Association Book of the Year Award for Fiction, Non-Traditionally Published.

On the edge of the Chicago medical district, the Harrison School for Exceptional Youth looks like a castle in a snow globe. Janina has been there since she was ten years old, and now she’s fourteen. She feels so safe inside its walls that she’s afraid to leave.

Devante’s parents bring him there after a tragedy leaves him depressed and suicidal. Even though he’s in a different place, he can’t escape the memories that come flooding back when he least expects them.

Dr. Gail Thomas comes to work there after quitting her medical residency. Frustrated and on the verge of giving up on her dreams, she sees becoming a counselor as her last chance to put her skills to the test.

When he founded the school, Dr. Lutkin designed its unique environment to be a place that would change the students’ lives. He works hard as the keeper of other people’s secrets, though he never shares any of his own.
But everything changes late in the winter of 1994 when these four characters’ lives intersect in unexpected ways. None of them will ever be the same.

Find our review of this book in Episode 15