Tuesday, November 12, 2013
When Sydney Warner was six, she awoke one day to find her Mom's telescope and jewelry left in her room. Her Mom was gone--the note she left read she was going to be happy. Sydney managed to weather that storm well enough, but in her junior year far worse happened--and she went badly off-course. Syd's begun to cut herself. Her father and teachers don't know--and if they don't find out, she could cut too deeply.
Sydney's story is told with empathy and concern. Ms. Bostic did her research and made sure her fictional character went through a factual journey. The story's believable, heartfelt, and strongly written.
Some authors would shy away from the hard topics, but Megan Bostic knows that there are kids out there going through difficult situations like Sydney's. Is this a real condition? The new DSM includes a new condition listed called NSSI or Non-Suicidal Self Injury. It's estimated that one in five young girls today cut themselves with razor blades or burn themselves with fire. That's a dramatic increase from 3% of the population in 1990. This condition is particularly common among young girls from ten to sixteen. It's theorized they do this to trigger a flow of endogenous opiates into their bloodstream--these chemicals help deal with pain. Girls who are doing this are not acting out--they do not want parents or teachers to find out. Most conceal their condition with long sleeves or long pants.
Reading books like these help young adults to know that they are not alone. Perhaps that's not as good as group therapy, but it's an important start. How do I know this? Go Ask Alice stopped me from taking drugs in when I was in the eighth grade.
This book is absolutely recommended for readers of all ages. Sydney is a strong likeable character and her predicament is riveting. The plotting is so good you will want to read into the night.
SOURCE: ARC provided by the author
Rebecca McFarland Kyle, November 2013