I read two fantastic books recently that both happened to deal with mental health issues. Both were thoughtful and realistic portrayals of the challenges people with mental illness face.
Challenger Deep by Neal Shusterman
Winner of the National Book Award for Young People
The novel explores the experience of 15-year-old, Caden Bosch, as he experiences a psychotic episode and is sent to a mental hospital for treatment. The author does a fantastic job intertwining the two worlds of Caden as he struggles with what is real and what is a delusion. Realistic and heartrending the reader feels as confused and lost as Caden at times. MS/HS Schizophrenia, Mental Illness, Family
The Rest Of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness
Mikey and his friends are not Indie kids; they are the background characters in the fantasy "chosen one to save the world" stories. While random weird stuff is going on in their town; they are just trying to graduate high school and figure out the whole life thing. But Mikey and his friends are pretty extraordinary in their own ordinary way. I liked the conceit of the story: the story of the ordinary background people usually found in the fantasy stories. I liked how the mental health issues (OCD and anorexia) were a part of the characters' lives but not their whole lives. I liked how there was conflict but also conversation. They talked to each other and were multifaceted characters. HS Fantasy, High School, Coming of Age, Relationships, Diverse, Mental Illness, GLBT
If you liked these books you might try some of the following books. Also check out the 616 section in nonfiction for some great informational books on mental illnesses.
National Book Award winners were announced yesterday. Congratulations to all the winners.
Poetry Robin Coste Lewis for Voyage of the Sable Venus
Fiction Adam Johnson for Fortune Smiles
Nonfiction Ta-Nehisi Coates Between the World and Me
Young People's Literature Neal Shusterman for Challenger Deep
We have Challenger Deep in the SIS library and Between the World and Me is on it's way from the UK as I am writing this. So come check out some great award winning writing!
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Secondary Library @ Seoul International School
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Mr. gardes - Teacher Librarian
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