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Reviewed by Rabia Tanveer for Readers' Favorite
Taking the Cape Off: How to Lead Through Mental Illness, Unimaginable Grief and Loss is written and narrated by Patrick J Kenny. It is a self-help audiobook for anyone going through personal loss, grief, and battling with mental illness. A comprehensive book for parents recovering from grief, leaders, and any person who wants to shake off the stigma of mental illness. Author Patrick J Kenny shares his struggles as a Fire Chief and a father who lost his son to suicide. Used to being the hero and saving people, Patrick Kenny struggled a lot when he couldn’t protect his son who battled with mental illness for almost all his life. That ordeal led him to look deeper into what we call heroism, protection, and acceptance. After the death of his son, Patrick faced realities that were hidden from him, and in his book, he shares all those life lessons with anyone who needs them.
Patrick Kenny put his heart and soul into this book, and it was apparent in the way he narrated it. The way he talked about his son Sean, how Patrick felt like a failure and not the leader he prided himself on being brought tears to my eyes. The narrative was simple, yet the raw emotions behind each and every sentence spoke to my heart. Throughout the narrative, Patrick emphasizes the importance of communication and how it can prevent, help and heal. It takes a huge amount of courage to share your mind and thoughts with someone, but once you do, it becomes much easier to cope with your grief or your inferiority complex. He led by example, allowed readers deep into his mind, and shared his most vulnerable parts so that readers could take courage from his life. Mental health is still a taboo in many professions, but especially in professions such as firefighting or any life-saving profession. Patrick shared some sound advice and gave courage to readers to look for the positive in life, even when things were devastating. Encouraging and uplifting!