Rating: 3.5 Stars
Vicky Cruz, despite her attempted suicide, finds herself very much alive and on her way to Lakeview Hospital. Here, she meets an interesting cast of characters, all battling with their own illnesses, and she begins to learn that she’s not alone. Through helping each other, the characters each develop a greater awareness of their own shortcomings and steps towards coming to terms with their realities.
I liked the characters in this piece. The main character really made me empathize with the complete lack of motivation that depression comes with. It sucks you in, leaving you with nothing to enjoy, and no real aspirations to push further beyond. I felt like the book was really true to mental illnesses and their representations throughout the main characters.
There were times when I felt that sections blurred by, as though large segments of time whooshed on by. All of a sudden we were a week or two in, and I just would have liked to know more about how that week went, rather than being told it passed by with little event. At other times, it felt as though little happened.
Warning spoiler in brackets: There were a few instances where I felt like what was written, didn’t seem at all plausible (inviting a group of kids to your ranch? I mean – that’s just weird – if it was a designated ranch camp – I could get behind that, but it just didn’t work for me. It felt like an irritating plot hole).
I’ve not read Stork’s other book, but after having read this, I’ve been told its quite good. I will put it on my hit list of books to check out, as I did enjoy the fluidity of the writing style and it does intrigue me.
Recommendations: It’s a book that deals wholly on mental illness, featuring around depression, so if that doesn’t appeal to you, don’t bother. Its not the kind of book that will change your opinion on mental illness books. However, if this is a kind of book that interests you, I’m sure there’s a bit you can take away from it.
Themes: depression, mental illness, overcoming adversity, believing in yourself