Monday, June 25, 2012

A Hidden Madness

James (Jim) T.R. Jones holds an undergraduate degree with the highest distinctions from the University of Virginia and a law degree with honours from Duke University (the Yale of the south). He's worked for an elite law firm on Wall Street, clerked for a judge in the United States Court of Appeals, taught for a year at the Law School of the University of Chicago, and since 1986 been a member of the faculty of the Louis D. Brandeis School of Law at the University of Louisville. Jim Jones accomplished all of this while dealing with the day-to-day struggles of his bipolar disorder.

Bipolar Disorder (also known as Manic-Depressive Disorder) is a condition in which people go back and forth between periods of very good, irritable and depressive moods. Often these mood swings occur over a short period of time, and can be so severe as to lead to suicidal tendencies.

My Review:

This 319-page memoir is both inspiring and eye-opening. Jim Jones does a wonderful job of telling his story in his voice. (His voice is that of a nerdy, republican-turned-democratic law professor and history buff.) Jim's personality comes through each page - the good, the bad, the selfish, the arrogant, the pompous and the manic. His authentic narrative of his life story is one of the things I like most about the novel. The other thing is his dedication to research; it's very obvious that he approached the writing of this novel with a law professional's reliance on research. As a result the novel is well-research and extremely informative. Jim does a masterful job of intertwining the facts of his diagnosis with his story and his symptoms.

I highly recommend this novel to anyone who has a mental illness or has someone in their life living with a mental illness. Jim does a great job of outlining how he's managed to reach the height of his profession and even outlines how others might achieve the same success. He is diligent in warning that no two people are a like and thus he cannot guarantee that someone who has all of the same opportunities (money and the best care available) as he did, will be as successful.


About the book:
A Hidden Madness by James T.R. Jones
ISBN: 978-0615571546
Publisher: James T.R. Jones
Date of publish: December 29, 2011
Pages: 336
S.R.P.: $15.95


  1. Hi,
    Saw your post on the Book Blogs group. New follower via RSS. Couldn't find a GFC section.
    My Blog is at:

    My Twitter:!/365Books_A_Year

    I'm really intrigued by the novel "Breadfruit" that's on your TBR list on the left. I added it to my TBR on GR- as well as the novel that came before it. I'm hungry now for Breadfruit- haven't had it in almost 15 years. Yum!

  2. Hi there,
    I just started following your blog and your twitter feed. Your reviews are so well written. How do you find the time to read so many books and write great reviews!? All I can manage in one a week. Funny that you mention breadfruit, I had some last night with bammy, ackee and saltfish, yam, green bananas and plantains. (If you know about breadfruit, I'm betting you know all of the other foods I just mentioned :-)) But back to books, if you want to get a feel for Celestine Hitiura Vaite's writing, check out my review of her Fragipani from February 2011.

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. This comment has been removed by the author.