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'Recovered, Not Cured...' was awarded SANE Australia's 'Book of the Year', and was highly commended in the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commissions awards ceremony in the non-fiction arts section.

Recovered, Not Cured,
a journey through schizophrenia:

‘The best recent book describing the symptoms of schizophrenia.

I recommend it strongly, both for individuals suffering from schizophrenia and for their families.’

E. Fuller Torrey, MD, Author of 'Surviving Schizophrenia'.

A compelling visual and verbal journey exploring the author's experience of schizophrenia: the first signs, reactions from friends and family, how he sought help, the challenges of recovery.



Edinburgh, 1994 I am crouching in an alleyway. They can t see me here, so for the moment I am safe. There must be hundreds of loudspeakers projecting secret messages at me, and umpteen video cameras tracking every move I make...They will tie me up, soak my feet in water and have goats lick my feet down to the bone...

'Nowadays I say that I am recovered, not cured. I have a job, I have my band, I have my friends and my family. I pay my taxes and do the dishes; I'm independent. A couple of pills a day keep me slightly lethargic yet sane . I can live with that.'

Mental illness is common, and often devastating. In this day and age it is a treatable condition, yet many are left untreated, misunderstood. Richard McLean is one of the lucky ones. His words and pictures give us a unique and poignant insight into a hidden, internal world.

'This is a powerful, quirky and important book. Powerful because it goes straight to the heart of battling a psychotic illness. Quirky because of the author s abundant creativity and the delight of his illustrations. Important because it outstrips anything else I have read about schizophrenia for its insight into the nature of psychotic thinking and behaviour. McLean writes with a bold simplicity and deftly avoids melodrama and bathos'. Anne Deveson

First episode Free!

Download the whole 5 part audiobook produced for ABC National here from iTunes.

Free Audiobook - Listen here!

Praise for 'Recovered, Not Cured...

A brave, adamantly anti-sensational tale.
Kirkus Reviews

In the tradition of Joanne Greenberg’s ‘I Never Promised You a Rose Garden’ and Susanna Kaysen’s ‘Girl, Interrupted.’
Lynne F. Maxwell, Library Journal

Mclean’s  raw candor and stirring clarity in both words and images make this a rare nonfiction gem, with a power that grips the reader as if by the lapels.
Donna Chavez, Booklist

McLean’s personal account of a journey through schizophrenia is vital reading for everyone concerned with the subject & Definitely book of the year for insight into schizophrenia.
Kieran McNally

‘A courageous, first-person account of schizophrenia.’
Lewis Opler MD, PhD, JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association)

‘A masterpiece of demystification, unflinchingly honest.’
Michael Winkler, the Age

‘A powerful, quirky important book & goes straight to the heart of psychotic illness.’
Anne Deveson

‘A profoundly thought-provoking and very readable book.’
Reading Time




*Starred Review* The words in this small but mighty account verbalize the essence of mental illness, and McLean's graphic illustrations crank up the volume. The Australian's raw candor and stirring clarity in both words and images make this a rare nonfiction gem, with a power that grips the reader as if by the lapels. McLean's first recollections of paranoia come from adolescence, when he heard voices from the other side of the backyard fence. Soon he was picking up "messages" from automobile license plates, radios, and disembodied voices. Not unlike many who suffer from schizophrenia, to escape the torment of a constantly shifting reality, he self--medicated with the usual drugs of youth, alcohol and marijuana. Despite plunging ever deeper into mental illness, he managed to graduate from university, hold a job, and travel throughout Europe, thanks to the emotional support of family and friends, who often excused his bizarre episodes as personality quirks. Frequently at a loss to understand McLean, they nevertheless provided opportunities for him to conduct what he calls reality checks. The happy ending is that professional medical care has brought his illness under control, and he lives on his own. The price he pays is a life that is "less interesting" but offers hope for thousands who either suffer from mental illness or know someone who does. Donna Chavez

Copyright © American Library Association. 

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