cover image Rock Steady: Brilliant Advice From My Bipolar Life

Rock Steady: Brilliant Advice From My Bipolar Life

Ellen Forney. Fantagraphics, $19.99 trade paper (180p) ISBN 978-1-68396-101-7

Forney follows up her graphic memoir, Marbles: Mania, Depression, Michelangelo, & Me, with a practical guide to understanding, navigating, and managing bipolar disorder (and mood disorders in general). Forney, who was diagnosed with bipolar disorder in the late ’90s and documents the many years it took to find stability, sets forth her personal experiences, coping strategies, and extensive research on a variety of topics including therapy, medication management, coping tools, warning signs, and stigma. She stresses that mood disorders require regular self-assessment, care, support, and treatment maintenance, and her approach makes this task list feel less daunting. Forney effortlessly conveys her message in clear, succinct writing combined with energetic but simple visuals to illustrate difficult concepts. What results is a balanced, uncluttered resource, infused with empathy, humor, and encouragement. This guide is mental health literacy at its best, making it a must-read for those with mood disorders and their loved ones, health professionals, and anyone looking to gain a greater understanding of an often misunderstood but common condition. Agent: Holly Bemiss, Susan Rabiner Literary Agency. (May)