Your book gave me an incredible sense of relief and understanding that I so desperately needed. I have literally read hundreds of books on mental illness and this is the most personable I have come across. You and the others have touched so many people by opening your heart and sharing your stories of recovery. I also loved the section with the complete list of Australian resources and the chapter for family and friends.
I have just finished reading your book ‘Back from the Brink” and I must say it is one of the best books I have ever read. I have been caring for people with depression all my life. In my 20’s I started to get it and had a really bad time in my late 20’s which lasted for a few years. Thankfully it’s doesn’t have a hold on me now but your book has really really encouraged me not to be complacent about that and to put some clear strategies in place to look after myself. I now just have to work out what to do and start doing it. I now have 2 small children so it’s hard to take time out for myself but reading your book makes me think I must do it for them just as much as myself. Your story is incredible and you should be very proud of what you have achieved. Your book and perseverance have greatly encouraged me. Thank you and congratulations!
It was an absolute privilege to be allowed into the lives of the extraordinary Australians that you interviewed in Back from the Brink. The book just reinforced that depression is an illness which does not discriminate who is affects, or what a person may have done in there life before it decides to strike.
You’ll never know just how many people will be helped by this wonderful book, but I am one of them.
I am reading the book - ABSOLUTELY FABULOUS. I find it very inspiring and it is great to know there are people just like me with the same fears and problems. A definite must read. Well done to all involved.
Practical, logical, doable but above all honesty with no crap.
Having suffered with depression myself, I found it very reassuring and inspiring to read about how others had overcome it. Their stories are so honest and courageous – I realised I am not alone.
Ms Faith Safer, Chatswood, NSW GROW Group
This book is brave, uplifting, informative, inspirational and optimistic… anything but depressing.
Good Reading Magazine, Nov 2007
This morning our Lifeline Centre at Mount Gambier, South Australia, received copies of your book, Back From The Brink, to distribute to our telephone counsellors. I opened one of the boxes, took out a book and began reading... Now, I am the CEO of this Centre, I am a busy person and I had lots of things to do today!! But I have kept on reading because this book is so inspiring. It is so real that I feel I could reach out and touch the people who have shared their stories. I can't wait to hear the responses from our telephone counsellors when they receive their gift and have an opportunity to read your book. I know they will be inspired too. Thank you seems so inadequate for this book but please know that this thank you is heartfelt. Your book reminded me that many of our callers are struggling in a dark place and to ring Lifeline requires an act of great courage. I will remember that also. I have never met you but you are not a stranger. Thank you, Graeme, thank you so much.
Eve Barratt, Lifeline South East South Australia
What makes Cowan’s book different is that it is written by someone who is a victim of depression and also features in depth interviews with 12 other sufferers including such prominent and successful people as the former West Australian premier Geoff Gallop, poet Les Murray, painter Margaret Olley, and gold medal swimmers Petria Thomas and John Konrads. Each describes in harrowing detail how they slipped into what Murray calls ‘the puddle of despair’. And how – with the help of others – they eventually emerged into the sunlight.
Steve Meacham, Sydney Morning Herald, June 14, 2007
I commend Graeme Cowan’s efforts in bringing the people and their powerful stories together in his book and shining a spotlight on depression, anxiety and recovery.
Jeff Kennett AC, Chairman, beyondblue: the national depression initiative
Back from the Brink is an extremely worthwhile contribution to an area that is often burdened with stigma and shame.
The Hon Mark Vaile MP, former Deputy Prime Minister
Through depressioNet, Graeme has gone directly to those living with depression to find out what they would like to ask those who have overcome it. This fills a niche in the market for those people seeking to better understand depression either for themselves or a loved one.
Ms Leanne Pethick, founder depressioNet.com.au
Graeme Cowan has, in his inimitable way, gently, empathically and determinedly worked to create an orchestra of voices that increase our understanding of mood disorders and how people learn to manage them. These are our leaders speaking – and they lead by example. Their generosity and good spirits humble us all.
Professor Gordon Parker, Executive Director, Black Dog Institute
These first hand accounts showing how people have overcome depression are sorely needed. To read about how others have tried various strategies that have ultimately lead to recovery, gives hope and inspiration.
Ms Dawn O’Neil CEO Lifeline Australia
Depression is one of the most prevalent conditions our 25000 General Practitioners from around Australia encounter. Graeme’s book will help our members explain to their patients that people from all walks of life can be affected. It contains very courageous testimonies and research which will benefit both our doctors and their patients.
Ms Kate Carnell, CEO, Australian General Practice Network
In both my work as a local MP and my family life, I have been called upon to assist people suffering from depression. This book will give those people supporting loved ones with depression considerable information and insight to be of most help.
Mr Barry O’Farrell, Premier NSW
This is a very valuable resource for those supporting a family member or friend with depression. It offers specific advice on how to be of most help without sacrificing your own wellbeing.
Rhoda Immerman, former Executive Director, ARAFMI NSW Inc (Association of Relatives and Friends of the Mentally Ill)