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The Man Who Couldn't Stop : OCD and the True Story of a Life Lost in Thought
by David Adam


Overview -

An intimate look at the power of intrusive thoughts, how our brains can turn against us, and living with obsessive compulsive disorder

Have you ever had a strange urge to jump from a tall building or steer your car into oncoming traffic? You are not alone.  Read more...


 
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More About The Man Who Couldn't Stop by David Adam
 
 
 
Overview

An intimate look at the power of intrusive thoughts, how our brains can turn against us, and living with obsessive compulsive disorder

Have you ever had a strange urge to jump from a tall building or steer your car into oncoming traffic? You are not alone. In this captivating fusion of science, history, and personal memoir, David Adam explores the weird thoughts that exist within every mind, and how they drive millions of us toward obsession and compulsion.
Adam, an editor at "Nature" and an accomplished science writer, has suffered from obsessive-compulsive disorder for twenty years, and "The Man Who Couldn't Stop" is his unflinchingly honest attempt to understand the condition and his experiences. What might lead an Ethiopian schoolgirl to eat a wall of her house, piece by piece, or a pair of brothers to die beneath an avalanche of household junk that they had compulsively hoarded? At what point does a harmless idea, a snowflake in a clear summer sky, become a blinding blizzard of unwanted thoughts? Drawing on the latest research on the brain, as well as historical accounts of patients and their treatments, this is a book that will challenge the way you think about what is normal and what is mental illness.
Told with fierce clarity, humor, and urgent lyricism, this extraordinary book is both the haunting story of a personal nightmare and a fascinating doorway into the darkest corners of our minds.

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9780374223953
  • ISBN-10: 0374223955
  • Publisher: Sarah Crichton Books
  • Publish Date: January 2015
  • Page Count: 336


Related Categories

Books > Biography & Autobiography > Personal Memoirs
Books > Psychology > Psychopathology - Compulsive Behavior

 
Publishers Weekly Reviews

Publishers Weekly® Reviews

  • Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
  • Review Date: 2014-10-13
  • Reviewer: Staff

In a wide-reaching discussion that spans the spectrum of obsession, Nature editor David Adam strikes an impressive balance between humor and poignancy, and between entertaining and informing. Adam seamlessly moves between personal stories of his own struggles with OCD and case studies of other people with the disorder. He also demonstrates that OCD isn’t limited by cultural boundaries, with the chilling story of an Ethiopian girl who ate an entire mud wall and that of Austrian mathematician Kurt Gödel, whose fear of poisoning led him to starve himself to death. Adam moves from these full-blown cases to more commonplace obsessions with ease, while his smooth prose ensures an enjoyable read. Not neglecting the darker nature of obsession, Adam manages to end on a note more hopeful than harrowing: the story of how he found happiness and relief from OCD. Agent: Karolina Sutton, Curtis Brown. (Jan.)

 
BAM Customer Reviews