The Boston Globe: Haldol and Hyacinths Review (Review by Kate Tuttle)

Mental illness is serious business — “bipolar disorder is a legitimate and lethal illness that has nearly killed me on several occasions,” author Melody Moezzi writes. Yet the dominant tone in Moezzi’s memoir of battling the disease, including manic episodes that took her over that “fine line between eccentric exuberance and madness,” is an infectious, freewheeling humor. The whipsmart but whimsical daughter of Iranian immigrant doctors, Moezzi details a series of maladies that befell her even before mania set in: First among them was the cultural dislocation of “enduring the seventh grade as the staggeringly skinny, flat-chested brown girl in Ohio, with a budding unibrow and a faint mustache.”

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the book jumps about both chronologically and thematically — in addition to chronicling her suicide attempt, the author also muses on her relationship with Iran, her legal education, her growing activism as a Muslim-American — but Moezzi’s fierce honesty and comic self-deprecation bind it together winningly.