Why did I love this book?
I read Darkness Visible in the midst of my worst depressive episode around 2008. I remember relating completely to his vivid descriptions of highly abstract psychological sensations, impending doom, for example, in which one feels askew to her or his surroundings, like death is imminent but you don’t know from where or how. Styron describes depression as being not unlike physical pain, and that moment in which you simply and utterly succumb to a kind of unprecedented existential suffering, if you will. It is a moment of agony, tender, fierce and absolute. Without a hint of self-indulgence, his rendering of depression is immaculate, a reckoning of the self, a crucible.