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16 Reviews
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Book
I was amazed by this book. Compelling, well written, brutally honest, I couldn't put it down. It is also informative, as Cahalan did considerable research about the brain, and included some of it in some very accessible notes. There is a genuine feeling of suspense and fear, as doctors struggle to discover what is wrong with this strange patient while Cahalan's family...
Published 12 months ago by C. Neshine

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars a glimpse into the workings of a sick brain...frightening because of how realistic it is.
The line between mental illness and organic brain disease has been irrevocably blurred if not completely erased by Susannah's account off her month of madness. Her story, reconstructed from her own admittedly unreliable memories combined with her parents' journal entries and hospital videotapes during her admission to the epilepsy unit at NYU, is a realistic account of a...
Published 11 months ago by J McKenna


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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Book, April 20 2013
By 
C. Neshine "ghostcatbce" (Calgary, AB, Canada) - See all my reviews
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I was amazed by this book. Compelling, well written, brutally honest, I couldn't put it down. It is also informative, as Cahalan did considerable research about the brain, and included some of it in some very accessible notes. There is a genuine feeling of suspense and fear, as doctors struggle to discover what is wrong with this strange patient while Cahalan's family struggle to support her, while dealing with their own fears, and terrors. I can't recommend this book enough.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mine is a well traveled book!, Jan. 5 2014
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This review is from: Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness (Hardcover)
Susanna Cahalan is the victim of anti-NMDA encephalitis and this book is about her illness and her recovery. Misdiagnoses abound, with times spent on psychiatric wards, family doubts, fears, and not knowing what to do about their previously accomplished daughter. It's a disease becoming more and more identified as research is bringing it and the symptoms to the public eye. I gave this book to my daughter after I'd read it. She is a health care worker and it has helped her base of knowledge. She loaned it to her brother in-law, who took it with him to Paris. Cahalan's illness and recovery is a good read and highly recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book, July 12 2013
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This review is from: Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness (Hardcover)
This book is a great read, not only does Susannah relive her experience but you can tell she did a lot of research on what happened to her during her "month of madness". By showing the emotion everyone felt around her during this time its almost like you were there too.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars a glimpse into the workings of a sick brain...frightening because of how realistic it is., May 14 2013
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The line between mental illness and organic brain disease has been irrevocably blurred if not completely erased by Susannah's account off her month of madness. Her story, reconstructed from her own admittedly unreliable memories combined with her parents' journal entries and hospital videotapes during her admission to the epilepsy unit at NYU, is a realistic account of a rapid descent into a severe neurological condition superficially resembling schizophrenia. It is frightening in how close she came to being diagnosed as schizophrenic when she really had a reversible, treatable, auto-immune encephalitis. Her diagnosis which required weeks of tests and referral to several neurologists was pursued relentlessly by her parents with the support of her boyfriend, despite at times seeming hopeless. This is a moving and realistic account that provides fascinating insights into diseases of the mind and the power of love in healing. Susannah's story reaffirms the importance of having someone who cares enough to keep pushing until an answer is found, particularly when nobody seems to know what is going on.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing book!, March 21 2013
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I kept thinking what if this had happened to me!

True story from which I learned a lot about health and love.

I recommend it!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Riveting..., March 6 2014
By 
Louise Jolly "Bookaholic" (Ontario, Canada) - See all my reviews
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Story Description:
Simon & Schuster|August 6, 2013|Trade Paperback|ISBN: 978-1-4516-2138-9
An award-winning memoir and instant New York Times bestseller that goes far beyond its riveting medical mystery. BRAIN ON FIRE is the powerful account of one woman's struggle to recapture her idenity.
When twenty-four-year-old Susannah Cahalan woke up alone in a hospital room, strapped to her bed and unable to move or speak, she had no memory of how she'd gotten there. Days earlier, she had been on the threshold of a new, adult life; at the beginning of her first serious relationship and a promising career at a major New York newspaper. Now she was labeled violent, psychotic, a flight risk. What happened?
In a swift and breathtaking narrative, Susannah tells the astonishing true story of her descent into madness, her family's inspiring faith in her, and the lifesaving diagnosis that nearly didn't happen. "A fascinating look at the disease that...could have cost this vibrant, vital young woman her life" (People). BRAIN ON FIRE is an unforgettable exploration of memory and identity, faith and love, and a profoundly compelling tale of survival and perseverance that is destined to become a classic.
My Review:
Susannah's story is almost unbelievable, but it is real. It just shows how complex our brains really are and how quickly something unexpected can happen. During her month into hell, I wasn't sure she was going to make it out the other end. If it hadn't been for the dedication and devotion of one specific doctor she most likely would have lost her mind forever and never regained her self.
The story was riveting to say the least and kept me glued to my seat. The medical jargon was explained in layman's terms so it was easy to understand exactly what was going on with Susannah each step of the way.
I would highly recommend this book to friends and relatives.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Deep and educative, Feb. 3 2014
By 
John (Charleston, USA) - See all my reviews
A well written book on a very interesting premise. Insightful, succinct and educative account of a crippling disease of the mind and the patience's odyssey back to normalcy. True to life and helpful stories like Susannah Cahalan's Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness, and other Janvier Chando's educative story The Grandmothers, help give us strength and hope in life.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Ambivalent, Jan. 15 2014
Not to discount her experience, however, the book was not well written. The pace is very slow. I have difficulty getting through it and stopped reading it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant!, Dec 31 2013
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Susannah Cahalan reveals her vulernable side which makes this story very raw and powerful. A very compelling read! Read it.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting!, Nov. 11 2013
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What a read. Susannah is a survivor! All doctors need to read this book! Our medical people all should be aware of this condition!
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Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness
Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness by Susannah Cahalan (Hardcover - Nov. 13 2012)
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