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Saturday, July 27, 2013

[Book Review] The Minds of Billy Milligan (24 Wajah Billy - Indonesian edition)

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

For the first time after been so long not reading a thick book, I can finish this one in only less than a week. The first night I got this novel, I didn't sleep at all. My eyes were so sleepy, yet Billy's personalities journey for seven years kept me up.

So, what's the good in this book? I don't know myself, though. Based on true story. The first part of the novel tells of Billy Milligan who being caught due to allegations of rape by three female students from Ohio State University. When visited by police at his apartment and questioned, Billy confessed that his name is not Billy. The police certainly do not believe and finally brought Milligan to jail. It was determined that Billy's personality, style of speech, accent, and his behavior always changing from time to time. Sometimes he spoke fluent English with an accent and haughty attitude, then seconds later turned into Serbo-Croatian accent with a defensive stance like a fighter, and then changed again into an anti-social person who hate others. When finally he was treated by a psychiatrist, only then William Stanley Milligan was diagnosed with multiple personalities. And it turns out, there are twenty-four different personalities, who live in Milligan's body.

Twenty-four!! Can you imagine?! o.O

These twenty four personalities were in turn controlled Billy's body, taking his consciousness, while the core personality kept asleep for seven years. This book presents the life experience of Billy Milligan during controlled by the twenty-four personalities that full of horrible stories.

To be honest I rarely read a psychological novel based on true stories like this. My sister, who was a psychologist university student, recommend it to me because she knew I was working on a project of novel writing with the theme of split personality. I initially thought I would not finish it, look at the thickness of this novel. But it was only in less than a week I have finished. Daniel Keyes has presented the facts in a very flowing style of storytelling and firm, with no eliminating the reports, hospital diagnosis, letters, and interviews from around the Billy relatives who can help this novel. Everything was presented very neatly. Very interesting, very thrilling, and deserves five-star rating from me. ^ ^


  1. Hey :) I read this novel a long time a go (when I was in senior high I guess), and I felt the same way. It really is a great book, captivating and gut-wrenching. Have you read Sybil by Flora Rheta Schreiber? It's awesome too. She got sixteen personalities though, not as much as Billy's, but wonderful true story. Are you planning to read the sequel of Billy book? I personally thought the first is the best, the second is okay enough.

    1. Ah yeah, I also want to read the Sybil one since in this book Sybil often mentioned by Judy who saved Billy Milligan. It was like if people want to understand him, they should read Sybil. I would love to read it as well but I don't think I can get it easily at book store nowadays as I heard that is an old book, same goes for sequel of Billy. :(
      Btw, sorry for late reply. The notification didn't go to my phone so I didn't know there's a comment -_-
      Btw, do you have a book blog as well? I want to follow if you have one ^^
      and last not least, nice to meet you xD

    2. Hahahahaha we're actually in the same community you know, BBI. I'm a new member, and just started bookblogging recently too. Check my bookblog here,

    3. Oh from BBI, I see. Hmm, you must have seen my blog from the blogger list on BBI FB am I right? Actually I deactivated my FB just few weeks ago so I don't know if there's any new member. Kk, I'll check your book blog soon! :D

  2. I'm interested in this book for several years but I don't dare to read it. I thought the story would mock my mind. Have you read the sequel, where Billy has...I don't remember..32 personalities?
    Nice to meet you, and sorry for my poor english :D

    1. Nah, I have not read the sequel. I'm looking for one though. It's hard to search the book nowadays in book store. :( I really recommend you to read the book! Billy is really unique with all those his personalities ^^

      And no, your English is really good don't worry hahaha!

      Aku juga nulis blog ini dalam English kalau lagi mood aja kok, heheh! XD


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