Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature originated by The Broke and the Bookish, where each Tuesday a list of books will be posted answering to that week’s corresponding prompt.
This week’s prompt is: Ten Books That Feature Characters ____________.
I chose books that feature characters with mental illness and I am particularly excited to share this with you, Dear Reader, because for a long time I was very much into books that portrayed mentally ill characters and how they dealt with their disorder, especially young, vulnerable characters that had to go through normal high school experiences dealing with something out of their control.
Abnormal psychology has always particularly interested me from an early age, and I suppose it is what led me to where I am today: a psychology student and a proud owner of a ridiculous amount of mental disorder-related books :D. Here are what I consider to be my top ten favorites:
“Loyalty isn’t a bad thing, but it is when you’re fifteen and you have no experience…”
Jonah is April’s first serious boyfriend, her closest and best friend. And everything is perfect until Schizophrenia attempts to steal the Jonah she loves from her. April chooses to believe Jonah will get better and stays by his side through thick and thin – faithful and loyal to a fault. But as Jonah learns to navigate through this strange world between illusion and reality, April will have to ask herself, how much is too much loyalty? And how much is she willing to help Jonah without losing herself too.
“If you could read my mind, you wouldn’t be smiling…”
Beneath her cool, perfectly trimmed self, popular teen athlete Samantha struggles with Pure-Obsessional OCD. With the help of her trusted psychiatrist and supportive family system, she manages to stay at the top of the social pyramid, where she deals with fake smiles and false friends until she meets Caroline. As she learns the meaning of true friendship and self-acceptance, Samantha must hold on to her sanity tighter than ever…
“The girl in the mirror was too much and not enough…”
Stevie finds herself stuck in the middle of the desert, in a sixty-day program that’s supposed to treat an eating disorder that she has no intention of overcoming. Why? Because there are only twenty-seven days until she plans to join her dead brother Josh.
This book is so much more than just about an eating disorder, is about a very broken and lost girl and how her perception of death influence the choices she makes.
After losing his mom to suicide and being left to an abusive father, Tyler must get creative to keep up his good grades and get a football scholarship to finally skip town. Looking for ways to sustain himself, Tyler meets Jordyn, his former childhood friend. She brings an end to Tyler’s never-ending pity party and keeps him from falling deeper into the spiral of depression his situation had caused. As he struggles to keep afloat in a world tainted by violence, abandonment and self-loathing, Tyler must decide, if after everything, a future with Jordyn is what he needs. This book does a pretty good job of showcasing the impact a parent suffering from depression leaves on their kid.
“I am a sociopath and so are you.”
In the memoir, Confessions of a Sociopath, diagnosed sociopath and megalomaniac M. E. Thomas gives us an exclusive invitation into her head and everyday life, and attempts to answer just how big of a role sociopathy plays in her everyday decision-making, debunking myths created by the portrayed sociopaths we’ve been sold on TV and pop culture. For those who are curious about what makes an individual a sociopath, this is a great and quick read, but be prepared for a few surprises – you might have a lot more in common with her than you originally thought!
“And I want you to know that I am both happy and sad and I’m still trying to figure out how that could be.”
A coming of age story, Charlie, a quiet, observant kid navigates the strange years of adolescence. Through first loves, true friendships and family drama, Charlie deals with it all in his own unique way, suffering from some serious PTSD and repressed emotional disturbances, until he is forced to make a choice – embrace life or run from it.
“If everyone could just wear new clothes everyday, I reckon depression wouldn’t exist anymore.”
Compared to the other books on this list, it is almost laughable this series made it here, but the truth is, spending addiction is something very real and very serious out there and Sophie Kinsella did a wonderful job of opening my eyes to this particularly unusual addiction – and what’s more, she did it in the funnest way possible!
Rebecca Bloomwood doesn’t know what it’s like to repeat clothes, or what it means to save for that matter… As she struggles to avoid bankruptcy – as a financial advisor of all things! – she meets millionaire and business magnate, Luke Brandon. Together, they embark on a life journey where Luke must learn to keep up with Becky’s spending and she must come to terms with his workaholism.
“Reality, it turns out, is often not what you perceive it to be—sometimes, there really is someone out to get you…”
Most freshmen prepare themselves to deal with typical high school drama… Not Alex, though. She fights a daily battle to figure out the difference between reality and delusion, trying to win the eternal war against schizophrenia. But as she is thrust into the world of high school normalcy (parties, first dates, meeting new people), she realizes that she had braced herself for every bit of crazy, but not for every bit of normal…
“After you’ve had it…”
Read her diary and discover how it all started… how one decision robbed this young girl of her innocence, youth and identity… leading her down a road with no return until she was no more than just a drug addict. Extremely powerful for young generations, this whole book is a warning.
We Were Liars follows eighteen year-old Cadence Sinclair as she goes through what can only be described as a summer full of self-loathing, denial and depression in her family’s private island. Only in the end will the readers truly understand what pushed Cadence over the edge, and what is so horrible that her own subconsciousness must strive to keep it hidden from her at all costs. Cadence suffers from dissociative amnesia induced by a past traumatic experience.