Bexhill writer's unsettling journey

A BEXHILL resident suffering with bipolar disorder has written an autobiographical account of what it's like to spend a lifetime living with the condition.

David Thomas’s book, Unsettling, gives a fascinating insight of a journey of self-discovery surrounding a life filled with extreme mood-swings, extreme behaviour and ultimately understanding what makes him tick.

However, David is quick to point out that his book is not a detailed account of bipolar and that anyone looking for medical information on the condition needs to “look in a different section of the book shop”.

He said: “I’m just an ordinary chap writing about how the illness has shaped my life. Every now and again my wires become crossed and I don’t function as I’m supposed to.”

David describes his book as being “a somewhat quirky and slightly oddball personal account of a lifetime of unsettling events apparently brought on by bipolar disorder”.

It is without doubt a colourful story of David’s life from when he was a small boy in the 1950s, living with his entire family in a couple of rooms in a bombed-out slum area of Liverpool, through a range of personal tragedies, moving around the UK then the world from job to job, from one town to another, until finally ending up - in excess of 70 moves later - living in Bexhill.

Describing the language of the book as being “frequently fruity” and “occasionally offensive” David said it “might upset those of a tender disposition”, but adds: “I simply see it as being honest and make no apology for it.”

Whatever preconceptions anyone might have about purchasing and reading a book which tells the story of someone living with a mental health disorder, one thing is certain, right from the foreword this book has that indefinable special something makes a good read hard to put down.

David’s whirlwind life story is both enthralling and entertaining, with a mix of laugh out loud humour, frequent shocking behaviour, and heartbreaking sadness at the turn of a page.

Unsettling is published by mental health publisher Chipmunkapublishing, with support from the Arts Council.

And as such there are a few typos and grammatical errors as students are used to proof read pages. In no way does this detract from the quality of the penmanship. It costs £12.99 and is available at bookshops or online at: www.chipmunkapublishing.com