Reviewed by Sara Drake

Living with Depression should be read by anyone with depression or anyone who cares about someone with depression. I wanted to say that up front as that thought kept going through my head as I read through this great synopsis of a common mental illness. I have long looked for a resource that so clearly lays out the basics and offers good advice.

Deborah Serani begins with a touching description of her own battles with depression. I found myself holding my breath as I read about her plans for suicide, waiting to see what happens next. Yes, I knew that she clearly lived through it to write the book but I could not help getting sucked into the story! Her personal view throughout the book keeps it from reading like an academic text book. Instead, reading it feels more like listening to a wise professor chat over lunch.

After her personal story, Serani describes the clinical definitions of mood disorders, their causes, their treatment, and the problems faced by those with a mood disorder. She includes a great deal of technical detail in her sections on the etiology of depression and the medications used to treat it. While she does a great job at describing the biological details, some readers may be intimidated by the density of scientific terms.

She offers helpful suggestions and contacts for anyone stuck in the morass that the U.S. mental health care system has become. I have read several books on depression and this is the first one to offer practical advice for individuals needing treatment. Too often, books focus on the mental illness or the treatment itself neglecting to help individuals with details.

Overall, I found Living with Depression to be both informative and enjoyable. I plan on keeping it as a handy reference for its listing of multiple resources that can be called on to assist with getting appropriate treatment.

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Sara Drake has been an avid reader since a young age. She has both a Master’s in Mental Health Counseling and a Master’s in History.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Deborah Serani. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.