A staggering 38 per cent of people in Europe are estimated to suffer some degree of mental illness or breakdown at some point in their lives. Adam Ant, Russell Brand, Alastair Campbell, Ray Davies, Stephen Fry, Paul Gascoigne, Bill Oddie and Catherine Zeta-Jones are just a few of those who have “come out” as sufferers of bipolar disorder.
That’s why The Episode is very much a novel of the Zeitgeist, telling as it does the intimate story of what the medical people call a manic episode. Statistics tell us that such episodes are likely to be repeated, leading to the classic symptoms of bipolar disorder, with its extremes of euphoria and depression.
When a naïve Felix Merryweather finds himself unexpectedly reunited with a woman from his past he can’t imagine the bizarre chain of events that will follow, as he is drawn into the labyrinthine world of the reclusive entrepreneur, Lord Lindisfarne. It is a world born out Lindisfarne’s, then just plain Victor Turnbull’s, descent into mania following a freak accident.
The Episode explores the boundaries between the real and the imagined; between the known and the unknown; between the possible and the improbable. It gives a rare first person insight into how it feels when an individual finds the intellectual certainties that define our daily lives crumbling all around him.