'Psychiatrists and I; we do not get on well. They have failed to cure me; I am still damaged and it is for this reason that I am cheeky and certainly not pleasant. I am hurting. I just want them to fix me. Fix Me.'
The Third Sunrise captures a young woman's life from infancy to adulthood. It is the story of a bright and precocious child who, at the age of twelve, after many years of fighting to find the answer, is diagnosed with early-onset bipolar disorder. She spends the next fifteen years struggling to achieve stability and battling serious addictions to a host of substances.
The book introduces a family who is very much secure. Parents, though young, are excited with the prospect of building both a family and a home. But something is wrong. Their oldest child is not like the younger two: she screams and she kicks. She abuses the family pets and hits her siblings. Her soft curly hair and faint pink lips are in stark contrast to the nights she does not sleep. The nights she runs up and down the stairs, manic even at 6 years old.
The Third Sunrise follows the main character as she navigates within the confines of her mind: a place which, defined by illness and addiction, is both frightening and fantastical.
The book takes the reader into a world that is as terrifying as it is exhilarating: it depicts the story of a young woman who, as a child, spent many years in a children's psychiatric unit where she was prescribed cocktails of medications promising recovery. Her family waits, but recovery remains elusive. She waits but recovery never comes. Instead, she discovers drugs and alcohol. They quickly become exactly what she needed: a brilliant, black, detour from reality.
The Third Sunrise exposes a world not often discussed: it sheds light on early onset mental illness, and provides candid and often graphic information about the world of addiction. It is not always a comfortable read: the main character is edgy and angry but also determined to succeed. The content is raw but quick-witted.
The book captures one woman's journey into the abyss of addiction and the coinciding transition to street culture. It confronts the reader with curious characters; the sort of people one crosses the road to avoid. The main character struggles to maintain the façade of being stable while battling her addiction. The Third Sunrise offers a confessional, darkly humored, perspective on life through the eyes of a woman fighting to find it.