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I'll Run Till the Sun Goes Down: A Memoir About Depression and Discovering Art
I'll Run Till the Sun Goes Down: A Memoir About Depression and Discovering Art
by David Sandum
Edition: Paperback
Price: $21.98
55 used & new from $11.19

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An important contribution to understanding mental health, November 15, 2015
Everyone feels sad or down in the dumps or experiences the blues every now and then, sometime deeply and over an extended period or mildly so and briefly. The normal cycle of feelings can be due to our emotional response to external circumstances, personal relationships, current anxieties, sleep deprivation, even hunger and dehydration. It’s all part of a healthy response to the many conditions that we care about and that we are affected by as humans. Depression, though, is not a form of sadness. It’s not a bad case of the blues. It’s not something you just shake off or satisfy with a Snickers bar. While it can be mild or deep, it doesn’t follow the same cycle as do healthy emotional responses to life.

“I’ll Run Till the Sun Goes Down” is David Sandum’s inspiring memoir of dealing with the disorder of chronic depression–from onset, to diagnosis, to ongoing treatment–through the support of his family, medical professionals, friends, and art. It’s through David’s discovery and immersion in art that he finds the solace and connections that not only help him cope but also find hope and meaning in life that keeps him going.

I discovered David through Twitter (@DavidSandum) and Instagram where he shares his love of art and the state of his current projects. His gouache paintings are at once brilliant and lively, passionate and sensuous, while at the same time telling us something of the weight he carries in his mind and body. When I learned about David’s book and the subject matter he deals with, I was excited to experience this other medium of David’s and also compelled to learn something about the debilitating condition first hand that I’ve witnessed in so many of my friends, some of whom eventually came to heart breaking ends.

Like his paintings, this is a brilliant story, but one that needed to be told and understood by us all. Mental health issues are like those of physical health, but often ones we don’t treat with the same level of compassion and understanding. Although the book comes to a natural close, dealing with this disease is an ongoing story for David. Until we can cure this disease, we also need to recognize and understand that story for others who are afflicted by it, too. “I’ll Run Till the Sun Goes Down” is an important contribution to that understanding.


Readability
Readability
Price: $0.00

4.0 out of 5 stars Pleased now after initial disappointment, February 19, 2015
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Readability (App)
When I first installed Readability on my Kindle Fire, it didn't seem to be able to synchronize my reading list of 3 items. I initially saved the links on my computer. I was able to read the links on both my computer and the iPhone app, but the Kindle app just wouldn't synchronize even after letting it run for an hour. I deleted it, and gave it a 1 star rating. The following day, I thought I would give it a try again. This time everything was synchronized appropriately, and the reading experience was what I expected.


Ghost Dancing with Manco Tupac
Ghost Dancing with Manco Tupac

4.0 out of 5 stars An enigmatic story of wild, colorful visions, February 27, 2012
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Is it possible that somehow Pizarro the Conquistador lived through the events that account for his death only to return to Peru three hundred thirty-eight years later, or is the withered old man who hires Manco Tupac as a guide simply a crank with delusions of finding lost Incan gold? Regardless, the man who claims to be Pizarro possesses a mysterious map that leads him and Manco through the rarified, soaring heights of the Peruvian Andes on a quest that brings them face to face with ghost dancers, apparitions of the gods, love, beauty, fortunes, and vengeance.

Ghost Dancing with Manco Tupac is an enigmatic story of wild, colorful visions in which the boundary between this world and the ethereal are blurred by myth, drunken spirits (or are they ghost dancers?), and orgiastic dancing. When final confessions are made and last breaths are drawn, the truth becomes only a little clearer.


And Baby Makes Five
And Baby Makes Five
Price: $2.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars And Baby Makes Gotcha!, February 26, 2012
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With the advent of her newborn twins, Nina faces an impossible choice. She must decide which one to terminate to stay within her Resource Depletion Allowance budget according the dictates of a sociopathic enviro-conscious government. In her decision, however, she finds the strength and logic to face her narcissistic, self-indulgent husband, Bucky, employed as an agent in the organization that works to control the world's population at sustainable levels. Nina's decision, in the end, reveals a secret that sets the balance straight with delicious irony and karmic justice. I honestly couldn't help but grin with delight as the unintended consequences of government regulation gone mad took their toll on one of its captains.


In The Cloud
In The Cloud
Price: $2.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Oh death, where is your sting?, February 6, 2012
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This review is from: In The Cloud (Kindle Edition)
Science fiction at its best leads us to ask some of the hard questions. For example, what if we could engineer our own immortality, escaping what nature or God has built into our own design? If death loses its sting, will life lose its meaning? Would we still be plagued with the risk of annihilation beyond the grave? Can we celebrate with those who were lame in this life who walk again in paradise even though we suspect that the cure may not be permanent?

In Jamie Todd Rubin's short story, In the Cloud, we learn that mankind's greatest fear has been alleviated and that our greatest hope has been fulfilled by being able to live beyond the mortal constraints of the body in a virtual paradise of eternal life. For thousands of years now, humans have been able to continue the life of their conscious minds after their death by being uploaded into an ancient cloud-based reality housed on the planet Mars. But ironically, Manyara Chan has potentially discovered a fatal flaw that even its alien architects may have been aware of and left behind clues about its nature. Now she must prove her intuitions, not just to save all of future mankind, but the prior generations of souls that have gone on to the cloud as well.

Yet, there are logical problems here in this story that were distracting to me that I can't quite discuss without revealing a plot spoiler. Maybe they will occur to you as you read the story, as I hope you will. Regardless, the bittersweet end to In the Cloud brings us face to face with the important questions. And that's good science fiction.


The Grinding House (A Horror Novella)
The Grinding House (A Horror Novella)
Price: $2.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Terrifying with only a brittle hope, January 1, 2012
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Something has gone terribly wrong in the world. Birds are migrating by foot, incapable of flying, and some simply drop dead from the branches on which they last alight. People are dying as they painfully fuse internally into a single, ossified structure. Even the flowers that arise from the graves of the afflicted are themselves calcified and brittle. Sharp. Rigid. Dead. The whole world seems to be plunging toward becoming a graveyard of brittle coral.

But maybe there is hope to be found, possibly in Sasha's womb, or far off in the resurrection, even if that hope is founded in nothing more than an ancient Arabic myth. Jeremiah's terrible grinding house, which reduces the bones of the dead into sand and meal, provides the only terrible pathway to that hope. And everyone must go through it.

Kaaron Warren provides in "The Grinding House" what a horror story should: a combination of vividly clear prose that paints terrifying word pictures in a plausible environment (recent stories of thousands of birds dropping dead come to mind), and a gnawing sense of impending doom from which the reader knows that if he were in this situation he could not escape. While Warren may offer a glimmer of survival to the reader, the reader knows that the hope is hard won, fragile, and possibly just as much a nightmare as the current narrative.


Chicken Little (A science fiction novella)
Chicken Little (A science fiction novella)
Price: $0.99

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's the Worms that Matter, November 12, 2011
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I must admit, halfway through this story, I had decided to give it three stars. Honestly, I had difficulty seeing any point in it. But I stuck with it, and I'm glad that I did.

"Chicken Little" addresses a key problem with human nature - the bias and irrationality imposed by innumeracy, our inability to clearly understand and weigh the odds of daily and infrequent events. The result is that we frequently do stupid things, buy a lot of unnecessary products, and often allocate resources inefficiently. Modern commercial marketing and advertising relies heavily on this pervasive flaw. So, what if innumeracy could be fixed, so to speak, with a pharmaceutical? Such a breakthrough would solve a world of hurt, so it would seem.

Before I go further, I offer another admission - a large amount of my professional work deals tangentially with these ideas, those associated with behavioral economics [...]. Chicken Little goes to the heart of the science that describes this all too human flaw of innumeracy. But then it asks an important question: what if that flaw could be repaired? I understand this and thrill with it because my own professional efforts ask the same question of others and provide the guidance on how to get there.

But "Chicken Little" goes a few steps farther. Likely, few would disagree that we'd all benefit if the biases of human innumeracy could be repaired. But would repairing that flaw lead to unanticipated consequences worse than the original flaw? Does anyone have the right to impose this on anyone or everyone without consent? Who has the right to repair us, to fix that innate flaw that might just be, in fact, an essential flaw? What other enormous possibilities await at the hands of one who has that power? The drama aroused by these questions await in the second half of the story.

"Chicken Little", then, is to me what the best and most compelling science fiction is really all about - the ability to pose a question about human nature and explore the consequences of altering some aspect of that nature through technological means. The point really isn't the advanced technology. The technology is merely a vehicle that allows the reader to suspend disbelief for the season required to entertain the narrative and consider the implications posed by the author and other oblique issues, oblique issues that may be more important than those posed by the initial questions. Blasters, tri-corders, warp drives, jet packs, grass that pleasantly stimulates the nerves in skin, etc. - these serve merely as artifacts that provide the rails to carry the story along and furnish a possible future in which the important story-pivoting technology plausibly exists around which important questions revolve. They are the can opener and the table on which the can of worms is opened, but it's the worms that matter. Doctorow's "Chicken Little" is this kind of science fiction.Thinking, Fast and Slow
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Nov 12, 2011 6:41 PM PST


If By Reason of Strength (A Techno-thriller)
If By Reason of Strength (A Techno-thriller)
Price: $2.99

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Melancholy Tale of Deep Regrets, October 17, 2011
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To whom does life belong? Who has the right to determine how it is used or allocated? Who has the responsibility for giving it meaning, and by what means do they accomplish that?

To Norman Gilmore, all life is sacred, although he was convicted for the deaths of four of of his crew mates on mankind's first excursion to Mars. Two hundred eighty years later upon his release, he seeks atonement, in part, by giving mankind the secret to his own longevity. But will his gift really be a curse to people who don't have something to strive for?

In contrast, the powers that be treat life as a commodity. To them, life is subject to the same kind of calculus we use to allocate material capital. Gilmore is convicted on the basis of a clumsy calculation - a lifetime for a life - as intention is seemingly never considered by the court in the case of his own crimes. The martians are eradicated for the expansion of mankind. And when the remnants of their species are discovered still alive, they are subject, yet again, to a type of cost/benefit analysis that benefits possibly everyone. But does that make the calculus morally sound?

Jamie Todd Rubin raises these questions in this haunting, melancholy tale of a man who wrestles with them and his own deep regrets after four lifetimes and the long return trip to Mars.


Cardanica (A Steampunk Nightmare) (World-9 Book 1)
Cardanica (A Steampunk Nightmare) (World-9 Book 1)
Price: $2.99

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It's Alive!, October 11, 2011
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Warning: slight spoiler alert.
Somewhere amidst the poisonous sands of World 9, the remaining crew of the crippled desert crawler, Robredo, face these terrifying realities: there is no escape from within the relentless autonomous survival craft, Cardanica; and someone will be culled to serve the needs of both the survivor and Cardanica.

But the most perplexing questions of all, with possibly the more terrifying implications, remain: why did someone design Cardanica this way, and what was the moral calculus they used to decide who would be the survivor and who would be the sacrifice?

Cardanica is a perfect way to start the Halloween season, not with ghosts or ghouls, but with a monster of man's creation.


Greensleeves (A Modern Fairy-tale Romance)
Greensleeves (A Modern Fairy-tale Romance)
Price: $2.99

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Isolation and Madness Turn to Romance and Freedom, September 16, 2011
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Mary Colquhoun's heart is troubled by the complexities and regrets of life. She takes refuge in her imaginations in her self-imposed isolation as a librarian. But her imaginations begin to border on madness and solipsism, that is, until a man from the circus shows up looking for his giant, whistling frog, escaped from his care on a cold Chicago night. Mary's melancholy story turns absurd, but in her final effort to give freedom to a life crystalized in glass, she discovers a bittersweet romance and possibly something more important - her own freedom.


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