Taken by itself this is a reasonable if sometimes superficial investigation, with appropriate case histories and examples sprinkled through a discussion of suicide motives, historical attitudes, minority incidence, social forces in different countries, suicide ""equivalents"" (drugs, drink, reckless driving), and prevention. Compared however with Klagsbrun's Too Young to Die (1976), this turns out to be almost identical in coverage but far less probing, whether it is dealing with theoretical interpretation or individual cases. What Madison adds--assertion of the value of human life and advice to the potential suicide (make a list of the good things in your life--is unlikely to have much effect. (Both books append lists of Suicide Prevention Centers; Klagsbrun's is longer.) Unobjectionable and informative as far as it goes, this will do for less serious readers; but it won't do as much.