Sunday, November 1, 2009

Book Review: Thoughts, Life of a Suicide by Dillan Kane

This self-published book, by author Dillan Kane, is an attempt to look at understanding suicide and how those that are left behind deal with the issue. The author is the brother of someone who committed suicide at a young age and someone who has worked in the mental health system with those who have suicidal tendencies.

Whilst this book is written from the heart, I found that the author focuses only on his own feelings and does not really provide an insight into how suicidal people feel or what makes them feel that way. While this publication is about dealing with the aftermath of suicide some understanding of what causes it is relevant. Disappointingly, the story of the author's brother is not really explored properly and I feel that if it had, a more interesting and meaningful book would have been the result.

However, I found that the first chapter of Thoughts was quite moving when the author reflects on the last days of his father's life. This may have been because it made me think of a similar situation with my own father. With this in mind those who know suicidal people may enjoy this book, they may find a connection.

Unfortunately, though, the book does not grab the reader, jumping between themes and repeating itself again and again. No doubt writing it provided therapy for the author but the reader is left wanting some deeper insight.

Apart from repetitive themes and nonsense about mediums by far the biggest problem this book has is its lack of editing. There is almost not a single page that is not littered with spelling errors and basic grammatical mistakes, on one page I found 12 such errors! Whilst no one is perfect, this level of bad English is inexcusable and I found it really irritating and it made understanding some sections difficult and detracted from what is a heartfelt message.

Although I found this book unappealing it is possible that others, who have experience of knowing people who have attempted suicide or successfully committed suicide, will find something to connect with here and may find it comforting. I would certainly not recommend it to anyone else.

Score: 2/10

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