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The Noonday Demon: An Atlas of Depression by Andrew Solomon (2001) Paperback Paperback – 2001
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The author poses challenging questions such as whether suicide is a personal right or if it should be obviated no matter what, and if the benefit of dulling one's depression with the use of antidepressants outweighs the cost of emotional resilience, why the disease's focus in the medical community isn't on prevention like so many other diseases such as diabetes, and so much more. He is refreshingly matter-of-fact about his experiences with the disease, something that is difficult at best for most people, myself included.
The Noonday Demon is by far the most perfectly written book about depression I have ever read. Solomon's personal experiences and those of others, coupled with research of every imaginable aspect of the disease equal a tome that is nothing short of a bible for the suffering and those who care about them.
As expected, there are some 1 star reviews by people who a) Are fighting an ideological war against biological psychiatry (usually Scientologists) or were b) expecting a "self-help" book. If you are thinking of buying The Noonday Demon as a self-help book, put it down now and look elsewhere (I recommend The Untethered Soul for this if you are looking for a self-help book).
I am frankly amazed at some of the 1 star reviews claiming that Solomon is pushing antidepressants onto the depressed. I found the entire book incredibly balanced. The only scathing comment I found was a (deserved) disparaging comment regarding Peter Breggin. The book features a range of positive, neutral and negative experiences regarding drug treatments. It mentions people getting helped by herbal treatments.