Craig Gilner is determined to follow what he believes is the best path in life: get into the best high school in the city, go to a great college, get a good job, and make money. However, when getting into said high school involves a tremendous amount of pressure and stress, Craig has trouble dealing with the obstacles. Unable to cope with his life’s new course, Craig develops depression, coupled with suicidal thoughts. One night, after a planned suicide attempt, Craig checks himself into a mental ward. There, among adult patients fighting to regain their own mental strength, Craig must re-evaluate his priorities and find a reason to choose life.
If you couldn’t tell from the summary, this one is a HEAVY read. Craig’s battle with depression and suicide can be tough to read at times, so this book wouldn’t be a good pick if you’re looking for a light, fun read. There’s also not a ton of action in the piece. It’s about Craig finding himself and dealing with his problems, so there’s more talking than anything else. However, if you love to read stories of personal struggles, this one may be a great choice. I also appreciated how Craig’s problems started when he was very young. Many adults feel like teenagers don’t have “real” problems, but Craig shows what I think is a very realistic picture of what a teenager’s life might look like.
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