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A Dangerous Gift by Clare Dickens


Memoir by mother and son of his battle with bipolar disorder.

This book is beautifully written by both mother and son.  It is by turns lyrical, profound, and absorbing.  It has the page turning quality of a good mystery novel as we try to follow the Dickens family and the course of Titus’s illness.  One is especially impressed with Titus’ bravery in coping with his disease, as he battles his wild mood swings, and frightening hallucinations and delusions.  No less brave but less dramatic are the daily struggles of Max.  It is as though there is a sinister “zero sum equation” at work.  For as Max ascends Titus declines;  Beautifully yet tragically demonstrated at Titus’ funeral where Max plays his guitar and sings a paean he composed to Titus.

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