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On Being Insane

“On Being Insane- In Search Of My Missing Pieces” is a book written by Elliot Gavin Keenan. It is published by Dreaming Big Publications. Dreaming Big has published two of my books with a third one coming. I felt obliged to say that because it is both relevant and necessary. I initially read the book and reviewed it back on August 4, 2017. So to make this interesting I am going to break this down into two parts. The first will be my initial comments back when first reviewed. After that I will tell you what stuck with me from reading the book. After all a good book stays with a person forever.

Elliot Keenan’s memoirs are an insightful journey into a unique world of autism and the complexity of mental illness. Told by one who suffers and by one who is educated in the science of psychology the books exposes the world of mental illness with dual lights. Thus not only is the book an enjoyable read as a story but it is told with somebody knowledgeable and thus technically informative. It is a book both from the heart and one heaped with informative scientific jargon. While reading the manuscript I could see glimpses of myself facing similar experiences all the while hoping that the ending turns out well. I would highly recommend Elliot’s book to anybody and to those wishing to explore mental illness it is a must read. It is yet another great work from Dreaming Big Publications serving the greater whole by educating the public in the field of mental health.

Please enjoy the trailer for the book.

Now here is what stuck with me over two months later.

First and foremost I recall how the author displayed his troubled childhood. In particular how he felt disjointed and alienated. In this I had a deep personal connection. That is one of the tragedies of mental illness, is the inflicts and attacks at such a young age. When somebody is young there is nothing to compare one’s present circumstances too. It takes years to travel to a point where one can look back in hindsight and discover that things in their own life were in fact not ‘normal’.

I recall the college experiences illustrated by Elliot. Once more I could relate to the experiences. I recall how Elliot was greatly influenced by one Doctor Pinball. I could relate to the benign intervention of an outsider in helping out. I too had a personal experience to this. This really had an impact on me as in the end Elliot not only graduates college but also goes on to graduate school. The fact that Elliot succeeds in the end makes the book like a Hollywood movie with a happy ending.

If I had a criticism of the book it would be the disjointed way the author writes by jumping around in time. Sometimes it was difficult to follow. But I would eventually recommend this book. It is a book of humanity and a tale of overcoming mental illness, something to inspire us all.

Here is a link to purchase the book.

On Being Insane

John Kaniecki

John Kaniecki is a full-time caregiver for his wife Sylvia. He is a published writer and works with the Church of Christ. John has lived with bipolar for over thirty years and has been hospitalized nine times, three of which were committed. John has chronicled his life story in his memoirs "More Than The Madness". Also of note is John's book of poetry "Murmurings Of A Mad Man" which are poems written about being committed in Graystone Psychiatric Hospital. John believes in the power of words to change the world for the better. His website can be seen here. His books can be seen on Amazon. You can visit his personal blog "Turn A Page Or Two" here.

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APA Reference
Kaniecki, J. (2017). On Being Insane. Psych Central. Retrieved on December 10, 2018, from


Last updated: 2 Nov 2017
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 2 Nov 2017
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