Divided Minds

Twin Sisters and Their Journey Through Schizophrenia

Pamela Spiro Wagner and Carolyn S. Spiro, M.D.

St. Martin's Griffin

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Growing up in the fifties, Carolyn Spiro was always in the shadow of her more intellectually dominant and social outgoing twin, Pamela. But as the twins approached adolescence, Pamela began to succumb to schizophrenia, hearing disembodied voices and eventually suffering many breakdowns and hospitalizations.

Divided Minds is a dual memoir of identical twins, one of whom faces a life sentence of schizophrenia, and the other who becomes a psychiatrist, after entering the spotlight that had for so long been focused on her sister. Told in the alternating voices of the sisters, Divided Minds is a heartbreaking account of the far reaches of madness, as well as the depths of ambivalence and love between twins. It is a true and unusually frank story of identical twins with very different identities and wildly different experiences of the world around them.

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Book Excerpts

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DIVIDED MINDS
BOOK ONENOVEMBER 1958PamelaI know where Mrs. Jardin keeps the crowns, we all do. They are locked in a cabinet high above the utility sink in which we wash our paintbrushes and the yellow sponge erasers used for clearing the blackboard at the end of each day. Only on very special occasions, like a birthday, does she take a crown out of the cabinet and with great dignity crown the lucky king or queen of the day, a royal blue velvet coronet trimmed with silver foil for girls, a glowing red and gold one for boys.This day is my day, my birthday, and I've been waiting all semester for

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Reviews

Praise for Divided Minds

“This harrowing but arresting memoir—written in alternating voices by identical twins, now in their 50s—reveals how devastating schizophrenia is to both the victim and those who love her.”
--Publishers Weekly starred review
 
"[A] riveting memoir . . . Divided Minds does a remarkable job of interpreting [a] hellish realm."
--People, three stars
 
"[Divided Minds] successfully yields compelling insights on familial bonds and the ravaging effects of mental illness on family."
--Library Journal
 
"The combination of first-person narratives provides an unusually well-rounded portrait of schizophrenia."
--Kirkus

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About the Author

Pamela Spiro Wagner and Carolyn S. Spiro, M.D.

PAMELA SPIRO WAGNER is a writer and poet living in Wethersfield, Connecticut. CAROLYN S. SPIRO, M.D., is a private practice psychiatrist living in Wilton, Connecticut.

Carolyn Spiro
Pamela Spiro Wagner

Pamela Spiro Wagner

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Available Formats and Book Details

Divided Minds
Twin Sisters and Their Journey Through Schizophrenia
Pamela Spiro Wagner and Carolyn S. Spiro, M.D.

Trade Paperback

Trade Paperback
St. Martin's Press
St. Martin's Griffin
August 2006
Trade Paperback
ISBN: 9780312320652
ISBN10: 0312320655
5 1/2 x 8 1/4 inches, 336 pages, Includes eight pages of black-and-white photographs
$16.99

e-Book Agency

e-Book Agency
St. Martin's Press
August 2006
e-Book Agency
ISBN: 9781466805392
ISBN10: 1466805390
336 pages, Plus one 8-page b&w photo section
$9.99
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