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  • By Marie Moody
    Oct 15, 2009
    "Two Sides of a Bi-polar Survivor" “Two Sides of a Bi-Polar Survivor” by Anastasia Cassella-Young is a memoir of a wounded life, starting with the author’s grandparents and moving rapidly towards the present day. The introduction points out that the stories are true, to the best of the author’s memory, and that they’re written partly as therapy, and partly in order to help others with similar problems. Passages of text are interspersed with poetry, where the soul of the author shines through. I found myself thinking how hard it must be to trap the past in words, and glad I’ve never tried. After a life of hardship upon hardship, of questing to understand the motivations of those whose actions create pain, and of cruel acts of fate, it’s not surprising that the author makes such a separation of story-telling from emotion. But it leaves the reader too looking for purpose, and glad of the introduction’s explanation. Real life is made of so many more characters than fiction,... More > and I frequently wondered which character was which as I read the early chapters. The author’s switches from third to first person tended to confuse me too, though they’re easily excused by the need of the narrator for personal space in such a difficult telling. Though the story is frequently bleak, there are rays of light, such as the scene where the car is stopped for speeding (again) and the small child declares “Look mommy he’s got a gun like the other policeman!” September 11th grounds the tale in the present day, even as the refrain “till Ana met…” the latest man continues, a depression that repeats itself like a broken record till Ana meets Derrick. But by the end of the memoir, Ana has comes to a place where “Any one day you make it through counts as a real day,” and I share the author’s hope that the advice and links in the final pages might help someone else live a real day too. Reviewer: Sheila Deeth< Less
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Product Details

Anastasia Cassella
August 14, 2008
Perfect-bound Paperback
Interior Ink
Black & white
0.46 lbs.
Dimensions (inches)
6 wide x 9 tall
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