The Locked Ward

  • by Dennis O'Donnell
  • Narrated by Dennis O'Donnell
  • 9 hrs and 11 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

In 2000 Dennis O'Donnell was approached to work as an orderly in the Intensive Psychiatric Care Unit of a large hospital in central Scotland.
'I don't know if I'm the man you want,' he told the Charge Nurse. 'I'm not a fighter.' 'I don't need fighters,' the Nurse replied. 'I need people who can listen.'
The Locked Ward is an extraordinary memoir that sets out to reveal the true story of life in a psychiatric ward - the fear, the violence and despair, and also the care and the compassion. Recounting the stories of the patients he worked with, and those of the friends he made on the ward, O'Donnell provides a detailed account of day-to-day life behind the doors of the most feared and stigmatised environment in healthcare. In doing so, he examines the major mental disorders, their symptoms and manifestations, and how certain triggers such as religion, sex, wealth, health and drugs bear influence; the methods of treatment, by medication, therapy and conversation; the love and support of patients' friends and family members; success stories and failures, and attitudes to psychiatric illness, both by the authorities, by those around him - and his own.
Over seven years O'Donnell witnessed the day-to-day lives of people suffering from the most hair-raising illnesses. What emerges is a document of humanity and humour, a remarkable memoir that sheds light on a world that still remains largely unknown.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Narration unbearable

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

No; the man has no sense of prose

Would you be willing to try another one of Dennis O'Donnell’s performances?

Under no circumstances.

Was The Locked Ward worth the listening time?

Vary hard to stay with it.

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- Paul


I thoroughly enjoyed this book! The author/narrator has a lovely Scottish accent. Dennis O'Donnell is compassionate and does a great job educating others who are not familiar with mental illness.
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- Rebecca Collins

Book Details

  • Release Date: 01-05-2012
  • Publisher: Random House AudioBooks