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Shadows in the Sun: Healing from Depression and Finding the Light Within Paperback – March 4, 2014

4.6 out of 5 stars 51 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Ramprasad admirably offers an honest depiction of depression as an ongoing struggle. She reminds readers that not all cultures deal with mental illness in the same way, and her hard-won triumph makes it easy for readers to support her crusade of hope."
--Publishers Weekly

"A well-written, novel-like story offering hope for recovery for families in the throes of mental illness."
--Kirkus Reviews

"Mental illness recognizes no borders, yet few books have explored the difficulties of individuals dealing with cultural differences and none has done it better than Shadows in the Sun. Beautifully written, Gayathri Ramprasad chronicles the devastating impact that depression wreaks on an entire family and then brings us into the light with her inspiring story of recovery. This book is a true gift to all those struggling with a mental disorder and those of us who love them. In writing it, Gayathri Ramprasad establishes herself as an international voice of hope."
--Pete Earley, author of CRAZY: A Father's Search Through America's Mental Health Madness

"Gayathri Ramprasad writes eloquently about depression, and about building a meaningful life in the face of mental illness.
--Andrew Solomon, National Book Award-winning author of The Noonday Demon: An Atlas of Depression

“Everyone who struggles with a mental illness, or who knows anyone with depression, anxiety, or any other mental illness, must read this engrossing true story of courage in the face of heartbreaking adversity."
--Dilip V. Jeste, M.D., President, American Psychiatric Association

"Gayathri's story of self-transformation is a marvel and inspiration for all of us--those who suffer, those who serve--that even at the darkest moments, hope, recovery and peace are possible."
--Christopher Gordon, MD, medical director, Advocates Inc.; Associate clinical professor of psychiatry, Harvard Medical School

"She has broken the silence for Indians across the globe and makes it possible for all of us, and especially our children, to embrace their most powerful experiences as opportunities for extraordinary transformation."
--Chacku Mathai, STAR Center director, National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)

"Shadows in the Sun is an excellent source for any clinician, patient, or family member to understand the disease of depression and the cost that keeping the disease hidden is having on all family cultures."
--R. Murali Krishna, MD, president, INTEGRIS James L. Hall, Jr. Center for Mind, Body & Spirit

"Her unflinching honesty is a powerful weapon against the experience of depression which so often eludes language and is shrouded in silence."
--Clare Miller, director, Partnership for Workplace Mental Health, American Psychiatric Foundation

"A tremendous contribution to our understanding and appreciation of the evolution of depression, in the context of culture and the impact among cultures."
--David Satcher, MD, PhD, Director, Satcher Health Leadership Institute Morehouse School of Medicine, Poussiant-Satcher-Cosby Chair in Mental Health, 16th Surgeon General of the United States

"Gayathri pens a memoir about an anguishing mental illness that ends in redemption and grace."
--Therese Borchard, author of Beyond the Blue

"A testament to the power of perseverance, and a must-read for anyone looking for living proof that all things are possible."
--Jeff Bell, author, Rewind, Replay, Repeat: A Memoir of OCD; Founder, The adversity 2 advocacy alliance

"Living proof of the healing power of understanding."
--Brandon Staglin, schizophrenia survivor and Communications Director, International Mental Health Research Organization (IMHRO)

"Anyone reading her book will gain valuable insight into what it is like to struggle with serious emotional and mental disorders, as well as receiving a most precious gift--reason to believe that such a harrowing journey can lead to hope and healing."
--John Head, author of Standing in the Shadows: Understanding and Overcoming Depression in Black Men

"Shadows in the Sun illuminates us all with fierce truth and beauty, and inspires us to our core."
--Janine Francolini Founder, The Flawless Foundation

"Shadows in the Sun fights the stigma and cultural misunderstanding of mental illness on a global scale. A must read, even if mental illness has not touched your family."
--Jessie Close, BringChange2Mind

"Highly recommended--You don't have to be depressed or have experienced depression or mental illness to read Shadows in the Sun. It is an utterly fascinating, compelling, passionate memoir that also offers a great cultural perspective on life in India and what it's like to be an immigrant."
--Bookfoolery.blogspot.com

"The struggles that [Gayathri] and her family underwent through will help others feel less alone as well as isolated and perhaps this book can help break barriers down so people who suffer won't be treated badly."
--Svetla-randomblog.blogspot.com

About the Author

Gayathri Ramprasad is the founder and President of ASHA International, a non-profit organization promoting personal, organizational and community wellness. She has received undergraduate degrees from Bangalore University, India, and George Fox University, from where she also received an MBA.

A Certified Peer Specialist (CPS), she is also a member of the Global Speakers Federation, the National Alliance on Mental Illness (past Board member, NAMI Oregon), and the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance.

Gayathri is the winner of the prestigious Eli Lilly Welcome Back Award for Lifetime Achievement and the Voice Award for Consumer Leadership sponsored by Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).
Gayathri lives in Portland, OR.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Hazelden (March 4, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1616494751
  • ISBN-13: 978-1616494759
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 6.2 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (51 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #445,303 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I also read this book in a day. Then I reread my favorite parts the next day. It was available through a pre release book selection from my local library via my Amazon account.

It takes a surprising turn from the beginning to the end.

It starts as a semi-autobiographical novel of sorts, about the daily life of a young girl who bobs her hair, wears miniskirts and rebels, then dons a sari, gets married and moves to the United States. Her first impressions of America are quite funny. It gently coaxes the reader into the world of a woman who experiences depression and anxiety and then how she manages with the illness and not only overcomes the pain and suffering but succeeds in becoming a spokesperson and takes a leadership role for those who suffer as she did.

The compelling story morphs into a helpful book without being too complicated or instructional.

The story is uplifting in every aspect and that was skillfully done considering the main theme was fighting mental illness.

I read a lot of novels and this book provides both an interesting story line and the possible benefit of some therapeutic information as well as hope for those struggling. The end of the book lists some helpful resources and has consideration for alternative therapies. Shadows in the Sun: Healing from Depression and Finding the Light Within
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Could not put the book down, but I read a few pages at a time. The colors of India come alive, its bells ring gently and the aromas waft a little longer. Whether you read this book as a fellow traveller on this long and yet beautiful journey of constant healing or someone with a blessed heart that wants to know more about those amongst us to whom the gods gave mansions to own but light bulbs that occasionally didn't work in dark nights.Buy it, read it. This book is a must read for South Asians, for it will wash away the layers of prejudice that may have been accumulated inadvertently .There are few words in hindi, hold on to them they reveal their meaning to you.
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Format: Paperback
“A truly masterful piece of work! This strikingly honest memoir gives a deeply personal insight into one woman’s experience with depression in the US and in India. Anyone living in any country will be hooked as I was to this stunning narrative that reveals Gayathri’s day-to-day struggle with depression through times of unrelenting despair, to a truly fascinating and momentous road to recovery and a life devoted to mental health advocacy.”
—Delaney Ruston, MD, Fulbright Scholar, Filmmaker, and Mental Health Advocate
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Gayathri's passion as a professional advocate for mental health is grounded by her genuinely personal life story, first as an adolescent, then as a wife and finally as a parent. As she unwinds the gut wrenching depth of her despair in the face of social norms and inability to articulate a shadowy sickness, the reader is her co-traveller across the east west cultural divide. It leaves one in awe of the power of the mind to imagine and overcome. A must read for the sociologist and humanist in all of us.
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This is an amazing journey that anyone who has experienced depression will resonate with. If you feel alone in your suffering, read this book! If you know someone suffering with depression and need insight into what they are experiencing, read this book! It is beautifully written, painfully honest, and I swear, I could not put it down. And layered beneath the story of one woman's struggle to cope with recurrent, debilitating depression, are the sights and sounds and smells of the Indian culture. The imagery is rich and colorful and the story is inspirational. I loved this book.
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Format: Paperback
Like any good story, “Shadows in the Sun” took me on a journey that provoked all of my senses. Along the way, I experienced Gayathri’s odyssey most eloquently in my heart. In recounting her experience with depression, Gayathri’s memoir is for anyone affected by depression themselves, for their loved ones, and for professionals seeking to help them. With 450 million suffering from mental disorders worldwide and 350 million struggling with depression, Gayathri’s story of hope is one that the world needs to hear right now.
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Format: Paperback
By her courageous willingness to share her most private horrors, Gayathri Ramprasad will touch many hearts. In addition to helping people with depression feel hope and companionship in their sorrows, this memoir will touch the caregivers—both family members and service providers. Ramprasad sheds light on the person in the darkness, providing a reminder that depression is a matter of life and death, that this illness casts a very wide shadow, and that even the smallest spark of hope can light the candle that guides the way back from despair to recovery and wellness.
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Format: Paperback
Gayathri Ramprasad pulls back the veil of stigma surrounding her life as an Indian woman to invite us into her very personal struggle with a life-threatening illness. This is a beautifully written tale, exotic yet terrifyingly familiar. SHADOWS IN THE SUN reminds us how closely we are interconnected and how we all have a stake in the mental wellness of everyone on our planet. Read it and share! Cinda Johnson, author, professor
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