In The New York Times Book Review, Andrew Solomon reviews Daphne Merkin’s “This Close to Happy: A Reckoning With Depression.” Solomon writes:

Photo

Merkin is capable of being at once melodramatic and finely nuanced; she has so many good phrases about depression that it’s hard to choose among them. In one episode, she is “shorn of relief,” which condenses the relentless descents into a perfect epigram. Depression is a social condition, and she gives it a social context, writing: “It was as though I fell off the end of the earth the minute I wasn’t in the presence of another person — or perhaps I meant that the other person fell off the end of the earth, or that we both did. However the process works, everyone seemed to dissolve, and I was left to wander around in a moonscape bleached of reliable human connection.” For those of us who have suffered the slings and arrows of this particular demon, there can be no clearer summary.

Source: The New York Times