Published by Dreaming Big Publications
Reviewed by Kara M
ABOUT THE BOOK
This book gives readers a glimpse into the life of someone living with bipolar disorder. It’s not a clinical book filled with facts and figures, but a book of humanity.
Spanning childhood to early adult, through stories of abuse, being bullied, experimentation with drugs and alcohol, inpatient stays on psych wards, a night in jail, his college days in the fraternity, hitchhiking across America, and his time in a third world country, John gives the reader a personal and up-close look into his life as a manic depressive. The stories are sad, shocking, and at times funny as he shares his antics while at his most manic and delusional.
Throughout his journey, John also struggles with his faith in God. More than the Madness is a testament of one man’s journey to grow closer to God while gaining a better understanding of himself.
John wrote his story to help educate others on mental illness and remove some of the stigma associated with it. It is his hope that readers will get to know the person behind the diagnosis; take away the labels and meet someone's son, friend, and husband. See that there is More Than the Madness.
More Than The Madness was an emotional insight on a mental illness that effects those who have it in different ways. Bipolar disorder is a mental illness I’m familiar with, as it has affected people I love. It’s often hard to understand the chemical imbalance without having it yourself, and I think Kaniecki did a beautiful job of just telling his story and how it affected him. The simple way Kaniecki tells readers about growing up reinforces the reality that is mental illness: it can affect anyone.
Sometimes the story jumped around a lot, but I wasn’t too concerned since life lessons can happen nonlinear. The memoir not only told the story of the author, but also the people in his life. I really loved all the connections Kaniecki brought into the story. The mixture of influences in his life really made readers understand how different everyone is, but how they can impact your lives in significant ways no matter what the chemicals in their brains are doing. The memoir also covers what it was like to be in a psychiatric hospital, and how they’re not all the same. I think this work says a lot about how people should view mental illness and how those with mental illness can be understood.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
John Kaniecki is an author and poet. His works has been published in over eighty outlets. He was born in Brooklyn, New York and grew up in Pompton Plains, New Jersey. He attended Steven's Institute of Technology for two years before dropping out. At that time John became a Christian and a member of the Church of Christ. Also John began to seriously suffer from bipolar disorder. This mental illness would adversely affect John. As such the topic is dealt with in his writing. In particular in his book of memoirs "More Than The Madness". Also the experience is poetically explored in the book "Murmurings Of A Mad Man". John's shining achievement is his poetry book "Poet To The Poor,Poems Of Hope For The Bottom One Percent." This book deals with historical figures and events along with people from John's own life. True to John's poetic philosophy the book is written with poems that deliver a clear message. Rhyming and rhythm are prominent. John's book "Sunset Shadows" is a book of classically written sonnets dealing with dying and death in a spiritual and wholesome way. "A Day's Weather" completes John's present poetry collection which is a depiction of his days as a neophyte poet. This early work is a wholesome and quaint collection.
John has a science fiction anthology called Words of the Future. This book is interesting, unique and exciting. John presently has two horror books out, "Scarecrow, Scarecrow" and "Satan's Siren". These two books are part of a series following the main character Anne McFry.
John presently lives in Montclair with his wife Sylvia. John is a volunteer minister at the Church of Christ at Chancellor Avenue which is located in the south ward of Newark New Jersey. John is also a full time caregiver for his wife. Expect more exciting stuff from John soon.
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DISCLAIMER: I received a copy of this book for free in exchange for writing a review. I was not obligated to give a positive review, and all thoughts are my own.