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Swallow the Ocean: A Memoir Hardcover – January 28, 2008
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Top Customer Reviews
I was truly blessed with Swallow the Ocean only a few weeks after caring for and then burying a mentally ill relative who had simply worn out those who lived in closest contact with him. He couldn't help being ill; the relatives who weren't around for him could be forgiven for giving up on him. He was not easy to love.
Ms Flynn builds a bridge for us to help better understand mental illness and how families struggle to do their best under very trying circumstances.
This is a marvelous, beautiful book. The writing is stunning!
Second of all, I was especially intrigued by this book because I have an undergraduate degree in psychology and mental illness is something that I've studied and that I'm very interested in. I also spent two years in college volunteering at a crisis/suicide hotline, where in addition to receiving calls from suicide victims, we also spoke with several "regulars" who were sufferers of different types of mental illnesses, including schizophrenia. The behaviors Flynn described her mother doing were very similar to what I saw in the people that I had worked with who suffered from schizophrenia. It was heartbreaking (yet also interesting) to read about this disease from a child's perspective, and to see the utter destruction it caused in these three girls' lives. It made me sad to read about the first time Flynn's father attempted to gain custody, when her mother put on such a good show that the courts threw his case right out - keep in mind, this was in a time when the mother ALWAYS got custody, so it was of course a long shot to begin with. But all the same, how sad to be a child in this terrifying situation, when even your own father cannot rescue you?
The ending of this book is ultimately triumphant, although sad at the same time. I feel for Flynn, being a thirtysomething woman and not having a mother to talk to - personally, my mother is one of the most important people in my life.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a story of schizophrenia. The mother slowly sinks into her mental illness - paranoid schizophrenia, and her husband and daughters are caught in the turmoil of the illness. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Note
This book delves into some intriguing events that made the author who she is today, but as a someone who read this book for the express purpose of reviewing it I have to be honest. Read morePublished 4 months ago by RSKrenger
I don't get this one. It's a tough read and very hard to get through. I wish this writer would have gotten to the point at some time. It just drug on, and on. Read morePublished 5 months ago by meshybelle
This book will make you feel things you never thought you would about schizophrenia and the family members who bear a large chunk of the burden. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Silver-silver
This book was so amazing in how clearly the author remembers and portrays the sweet, protective and imaginative relationships, play, and survival techniques she and her sisters... Read morePublished 23 months ago by oldbug
I was motivated to read this book because I attended high school with author Flynn, whom I remember as a quiet guarded bookish girl. Read morePublished on May 18, 2014 by Fredric Hamber
I like memoirs and the complexities of those dealing with mental health issues but this book didn't keep me interested. Read morePublished on May 6, 2014 by Hendy
The author beautifully tells the story of her & her sisters' slow slide into a life ruled by their mother's schizophrenia. Read morePublished on March 29, 2014 by Jfancher