Brain Storm


Author:Shelley Kolton

  • Publisher: FLR Press
  • Publication Date: June 1, 2021
  • Number of Pages: 292
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-578-73647-1

In introducing Brain Storm: A Life in Pieces by Shelley Kolton MD, Robin Morgan states: ''This book will not leave you unchanged... It is a harrowing, hallowing experience—and a triumph of the human spirit.'' There couldn't be a better statement to speak about this memoir of mental illness and the author's incredible journey toward understanding herself and healing. Born in 1950, she recalls having an idyllic childhood, her mother carrying her constantly, while her father would playfully toss her into the air. But she experienced loneliness, together with her brother, as her parents climbed the social ladder. Shelley Kolton has “been” many personalities on her mind — a sad little girl, an aggressive young boy, and many more. From her years as a child, until she transformed into a respectable OB/GYN in New York City, she has lived with depression, suicidal tendencies, and disturbing periods of panic. This memoir lifts the veil to reveal someone broken and deeply hurting, living under the mask of a loving wife and three wonderful children while being internally tuned to her gay nature.

Brain Storm: A Life in Pieces offers a dazzling account of Shelley Kolton's struggle with Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID) and her healing journey. Her crisp and sparkling prose stays the eyes of readers on the pages while the captivating voice and superior storytelling keep them turning the pages. Readers will understand the condition and gain insights into how she communicated and switched between her alters. This account of multiple personality disorder is spellbinding, peppered with images and memories that are rich and raw. She writes with a clarity that is mind-blowing and allows readers vivid pictures of her psyche. The account is ruthlessly honest and there are moments readers can't miss the biting humor — it fills every page. While Kolton writes about her unique experience, she gives readers insights into social conventions that have held many people captive. For instance, the pressure to have heterosexual sex pushed her to travel from Wisconsin to Rhode Island to have her first sexual experience. This book is bold, in turn, poignant and exhilarating; the author takes off the veneer and allows readers to experience her vulnerable fragility. That is the strength of this memoir, so sit back and enjoy what turns out to be a rollicking ride. It is as deeply moving as it is entertaining, a memoir that will change your perspective on mental illness. 

Reviewed By: Romuald Dzemo

Reviewed Date: February 5, 2023

Category: Memoir

Biography & Memoir