A Brilliant Madness
  Anna's book about manic depression...




The title is perfect for such a great book, and thoroughly describes that mental disorders truly are a

brilliant madness.  Not only is this book educational, it lets you know that you are not alone if you have

Manic Depression.  It is a combination of Anna's first book, Call Me Anna, and relays the stories of others

who share the battle of mental disorders.  A Brilliant Madness describes the different levels of Manic

Depression, the signs and symptoms of it, and the treatments that follow.  It goes into great detail when

recognizing certain behavioral patterns and describes the different situations that others have experienced. 

The book even describes the medications used in treating the disorder.  It offers comfort and support in

knowing that there is help out there.

Included are interviews with doctors who specialize in mental illness that help readers to understand just

what they really are. The stories from husbands, wives and family members who have experienced Manic

Depression first-hand are profound.  They are realizations of their lives and their dealings with daily life. 

The book also offers resources that those who suffer from a mental illness  can contact for more information.

Anna's husband, Michael Pearce, is interviewed as well.  He shares his thoughts about Anna and living

with someone with Manic Depression.  He talks about the difficulties he faced with having to deal with a

mental illness for the first time.  Mike shares the story of how he met Anna, the time she told him she has

Manic Depression, what it is, and how she deals with it.  It truely is wonderful how Anna was finally able to find peace and contentment with her life.  The way Mike speaks of her in this book is amazing; he is very supportive and protective of her.  I can feel his love, support, and admiration radiating from the pages.

Through it all, all of Anna's eight children (two of whom are actors, themselves) have shown that they

love and support their mother.  They witnessed the dramatic life Anna has led and without question, have

professed that "she's the best mother."

Raymond and Carol, Anna's siblings, did not live with their sister during the time she was exhibiting the

warning signs of Manic Depression, nor did they witness the "roller coaster" type of behavior that Anna had described having.  Instead, they read in newspapers and magazines the accusations of their sister being

addicted to drugs.  The media simply did not know.  Raymond and Carol have both said, "had [we] known

that she was mentally ill, [we] would have been supportive."  Unfortunately, they just did not know what

was really going on, as they did not see their sister much while she was growing up.  This was not because

they didn't care; it was due to the fact that Anna's managers, the Rosses, kept her from her family in order

that she could remain focused on her rising career.
A Brilliant Madness is a great book that offers both information and help. It gives readers hope in knowing that they do not have to face the battle of mental illness alone.


  -Leslie Giambruno, The Official Patty Duke Webpage