Brain on Fire and Other Memoirs

Brain on Fire by Susannah Cahalan

I read Brain on Fire a few summers ago while on a train to New York City. I read the entire thing on my trip, tuning out the conversation of my friends, because I was so intrigued. It’s the best memoir I’ve ever read and easily earned itself a spot on the list of my top ten books of all time.

With the new release of the Netflix original movie, it’s been getting a lot of buzz again. I watched the movie the morning it was released to Netflix. Since I didn’t do a reread before watching I wasn’t able to remember every detail and how well it matched up to the movie, otherwise I probably would have been more critical. I did enjoy the film; I thought it had great build up with her erratic behavior and anxiety. Chloë Grace Moretz did a great job as Susannah. The ending felt a little cheesy to me, but I liked it overall. I definitely recommend reading the book first.

Since Brain on Fire is one of my favorite books, I asked my fellow bookstagramers which similar books they would recommend I add to my TBR. This is what I got (and immediately added them all to my Amazon wish list).

Books similar to Brain on Fire:
Girl in the Dark by Anna Lyndsey
Sick by Porochista Khakpour
Ghost Boy by Martin Pistorius
My Lovely Wife in the Psych Ward by Mark Lukach
The Neuroscientist Who Lost Her Mind by Barbara Lipska

I was also recently asked by the author to review a memoir that I’m really looking forward to as it’s about the author’s recovery from a brain hemorrhage. It’s called Room 23 by Kavita Basi. It’s out in November so I’ll be reading and reviewing it this fall. It’s available for preorder on Amazon and 10% of profit will go to the Brain and Spine Foundation Charity in the UK. You can read more about Room 23 and preorder from Amazon.

Keep reading for synopsis and more info about Brain on Fire.

Goodreads Synopsis: An award-winning memoir and instant New York Times bestseller that goes far beyond its riveting medical mystery, Brain on Fire is the powerful account of one woman’s struggle to recapture her identity.

When twenty-four-year-old Susannah Cahalan woke up alone in a hospital room, strapped to her bed and unable to move or speak, she had no memory of how she’d gotten there. Days earlier, she had been on the threshold of a new, adult life: at the beginning of her first serious relationship and a promising career at a major New York newspaper. Now she was labeled violent, psychotic, a flight risk. What happened?

In a swift and breathtaking narrative, Cahalan tells the astonishing true story of her descent into madness, her family’s inspiring faith in her, and the lifesaving diagnosis that nearly didn’t happen.

Genre: Nonfiction/Memoir

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

Publication Date: August 6, 2013

Page Count: 266

Overall Rating: 5/5

Purchase Brain on Fire on Amazon

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