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"One of the most accurate, and therefore most harrowing, accounts of depression to be written in the last century...Ms. Merkin speaks candidly and beautifully about aspects of the human condition that usually remain pointedly silent (John Kaag, The Wall Street Journal).
Daphne Merkin has been hospitalized three times: first, in grade school, for childhood depression; years later, after her daughter was born, for severe postpartum depression; and later still, after her mother died, for obsessive suicidal thinking. The arc of Merkin's affliction is lifelong, beginning in a childhood largely bereft of love and stretching into the present, where Merkin lives a high-functioning life and her depression is manageable, if not "cured." In this dark yet vital memoir, Merkin describes not only the harrowing sorrow that she has known all her life, but also her early, redemptive love of reading and gradual emergence as a writer. Written with an acute understanding of the ways in which her condition has evolved as well as affected those around her, This Close to Happy is an utterly candid coming-to-terms with an illness that many share but few talk about, one that remains shrouded in stigma.
"It is standard fare to say books on depression are brave, but this one actually is....An important addition to the literature on mental illness."--Andrew Solomon, The New York Times Book Review (Editors' Choice)