I normally don't go in for "true drama" stories, but I purchased this because it was a daily deal and sounded intriguing. Since that's not my genre of choice, I'm glad I got it on sale, but if you DO generally like that genre, this is a good listen. It's well written, it moves quickly, and it is easy to sympathize with the protagonist. It's almost like a feeling of claustrophobia, imagining what it would be like to realize you're going crazy but not knowing why. I found it interesting enough that I googled both the author and the disease after finishing the book to learn more.
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I would not listen again. It was very interesting, just not something I would listen to again.
finding out the disease she has is undetectable by most doctors and many people in the past, instead of being possessed, might have experienced similar auto immune illnesses.
the changes in her voice allow the reader to place themselves in the main character's shoes to really feel her pain and confusion.
Because of an autoimmune disease in which her body was attacking her brain, Susannah Cahalan, a writer for the NY Post, spent a month in the hospital without memories, going through periods of psychosis, without any diagnosis in sight. One doctor who happened to have an inkling of an idea was able to turn her around, finally diagnosing her with Anti-NMDA Receptor Encephalitis.
"... A reminder of how fragile our hold on sanity and health is and how much we are at the utter whim of our Brutus bodies, which will inevitably, one day, turn on us for good. I am a prisoner, as we all are."
The story is told from memories, unremembered journal entries, eerie hospital treatment videos that she has no memory of, family journals, and medical records. The author will likely never regain the memories of that time. An interesting anecdote is that they think this may be the disease often passed off as demonic possession.
This story is great. I have an auto immune disease that attacks skin and muscle, it came on suddenly when I was 31. I was ill for 2 1/2 years before I found a drug that put me into remission. I've received the IVIG therapy that this lady did. It was interesting for me because I could relate with that aspect of her story but also because I am a nurse and I love learning about illnesses that I have never heard of. I would recommend to a friend.
A great book that was a cross between House MD and Mystery Diagnosis. It is definitely a real-life medial mystery thriller that will keep you reading until you find out the mystery diagnosis. The narrative also sheds light on the easy potential for misdiagnosis even with highly trained providers. Additionally, it makes the reader really think about their own health, and how we should not take our physical and mental health and well-being for granted. While the author does personally narrate her own saga, Heather Henderson does a terrific job conveying the various emotions and unnatural, difficult mental situations. The emotion and subtle inflections helps make this book believable as if you are standing right by Susannah experiencing what she is experiencing, or in the case of this book, experiencing "what she thinks she is experiencing." Additionally, the first person narrative is what really transcends the reader into the illness, the healthcare system and the various caregivers' lives. I applauded the author's research and access to medical records--something missing many other first-hand narratives of disease. This would be a great supplemental text for many college classes. The book sheds light on both the progression of disease and recovery. I gave this four stars because I thought the recovery section was the weakest part of the book and could have been shortened quite a bit, but before that, the book will grab you within the first few pages trying to understand how a disease could quickly can alter your reality and overall health. . . you are likely not to put it down until finished!
This book tells the compelling story of a young woman's mysterious illness that manifests as psychosis but turns out to be something else. What is eerily intriguing about the story is that the author remembers very little of it and she had to discover what happened during this period and try to piece it back together so that you feel as if you are going on the journey with her. Narration was excellent. Highly recommend this very human journey through a medical mystery.
So engrossing to follow the health issues of Susannah and her ability to get her life back. She had incredible family support and her auto immune disease was so complex and rare that it was almost a fluke that she was diagnosed.
First time, but reader has a great voice
To hell and back
The revelations about how much of our consciousness is contained in our brains. Surprising for someone who has always been "superstitious" and spiritual.
Waiting for the breakdown that you new was coming for the author.
The author's boyfriend Stephen.
Highly recommend it for anyone who isn't usually fond on non-fiction. This story is fascinating.
I don't agree with the reviewer who said the narration was too fast. The story is a compelling medical mystery that held my attention, I'm amazed that Susannah Cahalan was correctly diagnosed and glad she is doing well. Heather Henderson gives life to the story and makes you feel as if the author is there speaking to you. Clear and crisp. I highly recommend this audiobook.
This was a very good memoir. It is chilling to think that you can be at work one day and then have your brain attack you so that you are no longer yourself. How scary for her and her family. Wow! I'm familiar with autoimmune diseases through first-hand experience, and its amazing at the wide range of ways the body can turn against itself.
I thought that there was a good mix of her struggle with the disease and scientific data about the disease. Some of the books I read are way too heavy on the research, but I found that all of the information provided in this book was useful to get a better understanding of the illness. I also enjoyed the part of memories being manufactured and how you can spread incorrect information so that others also believe they remember the same thing.
The narrator was very good; at times, I forgot it wasn't the author herself speaking. I imagine this would be hard to do, given the fact that some of the author's terror and moods have to be portrayed. In this case, the narrator was an asset to the story.
I am glad that she took the time to write about this disease so that others can be educated and can learn the signs of this disease. Like the author, I cringe to think of how many people have received a psychiatric diagnosis, when in reality, there is a physical cause for their behavior.