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The Mad Reader

REVIEW : It's Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini

Afficher l'image d'origineIt's Kind of a Funny Story - Ned Vizzini

Publisher : Miramax (May 1st 2007)

Genres : Contemporary, Young Adult

Pages : 444

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Like many ambitious New York City teenagers, Craig Gilner sees entry into Manhattan's Executive Pre-Professional High School as the ticket to his future. Determined to succeed at life-which means getting into the right high school to get into the right college to get the right job-Craig studies night and day to ace the entrance exam, and does. That's when things start to get crazy.

At his new school, Craig realizes that he isn't brilliant compared to the other kids; he's just average, and maybe not even that. He soon sees his once-perfect future crumbling away. The stress becomes unbearable and Craig stops eating and sleeping-until, one night, he nearly kills himself.

Craig's suicidal episode gets him checked into a mental hospital, where his new neighbors include a transsexual sex addict, a girl who has scarred her own face with scissors, and the self-elected President Armelio. There, isolated from the crushing pressures of school and friends, Craig is finally able to confront the sources of his anxiety.

It's Kind of a Funny Story may seem an odd title for a book dealing with depression but the thing is, it wasn't depressing at all. In fact, it was light-hearted and funny. The author shows that we don't always have to put a serious face when we're talking about mental illness.

Depression is a very tricky subject, people usually don't talk about it and yet it touches 5% of the world's population.

Everybody has problems. Some people just hide their crap better than others.

What I liked the most if how accurate it was. It wasn't like All the Bright Places where all of the mental illness' clichés were reunited. The author knew what he was talking about and it showed. Craig's head is a mess, a very complicated one but it's easy to get into it and follow his train of thoughts.

The most interesting part is after he gets to the hospital. As soon as he met the other patients, I was hooked. If you expect horror movies type patients, think again. I found myself eager to learn about their experiences. They're living tough lives but they don't judge Craig for being "just" burnt out.  It's tough to write about only five days and yet I didn't get bored. This book was compelling and thought-provoking. If you want to read a book about mental illness, It's Kind of a Funny Story is your go to.

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