This is a YA novel for the therapised generation. Hannah, the narrator is down with being respectful about mental illness, understanding addiction and so on.
We hate labels, but the doctors like to call it a thing that rhymes with hi-molar schmisdorder or zanic oppression.
She’s talking about Zoe, her best friend and the creator of the Museum of Intangible Things, who makes a new installation about an emotion every month, for her younger brother who has Aspergers. The two girls develop a system to help Zoe with her bipolar and its attendant psychosis.
If she was feeling too much like Pippi Longstocking— thoughts racing, larger than life, egotistical, invincible, frenzied—if she was feeling these things, she’d wear short stockings (socks), reminding her to slow down.
[…] When she was feeling the opposite, depressed and imagining dark scenarios that were far from the truth, when she felt like cement was filling her veins and she could barely get out of bed, she’d put on long socks, reminding her to be more like Pippi.
It’s well written and kindly written. No wonder Hannah is so aware and sensible; she has an addicted father who is divorced from her depressed mother, as well as the bipolar BFF and her autistic brother. The poor thing is an entrenched caregiver.
Its author called it Thelma and Louise for teenagers.
It isn’t as good as John Green’s stuff, but it’s very readable. JG is better at weaving issues into a story. Here, the diagnoses are constantly, blatantly on display and Zoe works her way through the symptoms of mania and depression. It’s like she aaalmost wrote a really good book. Hannah and Zoe are likeable though and there’s enough plot to keep you going. Read it if you have nothing else to do.
I learned a new word:
To doven is defined as an alternate spelling of daven, meaning to pray and worship in Judaism, sometimes while rocking.