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Sunday, 5 April 2015

Mental by Justice Serai

MentalMental by Justice Serai
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

There are fashions in everything right?
Lately its been a trend in Step brothers being written about, now I have read 4 books in succession with Mental Health patients. LOL

I am trying to not compare one with another and take each on its own merit.


We have Lucy who is in Norfolk Psychiatric Center who suffers with schizophrenia.
We have Julian with his own Mental Health needs too.
They meet up in the Norfolk Psychiatric Center.
We have a love story.
We have discovery and we have the beauty of healing.

My Thoughts:

As with a mental health disorder such as Schizophrenia, its a complex disorder that has similar characteristics between each patient that suffers with it. And we have Lucy's POV which was well portrayed, but if you have someone who is going to be written into a story with Schizophrenia we need to see some bad with the good. We see in the Hospital how antipsychotic medicines and cognitive behavioural therapy is used which I thought was a good take.

Split personality disorder, hallucinations, and self abuse were touched on. This is not a medical book, its a novel, but bringing in those aspects would be part of Lucy's treatment whilst in the facility. Her parents were paying a huge amount of money to "fix" her.

As most of us know, there is no FIX there is just 'management' of the illness.

Sometimes no amount of medicine can help, but a good support system in place, which Lucy found in Julian. He was her aide, her confidant and she grew to love him.

I loved the romance between Lucy and Julian blossoming, but, I did find it a 'love at first sight "instant" love' which was perturbing as well as unsettling.

Yes Yes I know its a novel, but, as I always say, its got to have credibility and a little more added here and there to the story would widen out the credibility of it.

On the whole, I enjoyed the book. I loved Lucy and how she was portrayed, but wish the author has expanded her illness more to readers who have ignorance of this illness or fear of it.

BOTH Julian and Lucy were very complex people and a need for expanding would have been great :)

Gradual 'love' blossoming too, not this 'instant' love. I couldn't digest that bit.

Justice Serai writes well, its easy to follow and get into, just a few issues for me with the story, but it IS my personal take on it.

Hope is an illusion meant to convince the broken to keep on living. That’s me. Broken.

My father pays heaps of money for doctors at the Norfolk Psychiatric Center to fix me. I’ve spent six months of my prime teenage years at this residential facility – a place for teenagers who’ve gone mental.

That’s me. Mental.

Just when I begin to feel myself fade away, a boy with a wolfish smile and mischievous eyes reels me in. Julian is broken too, but he believes in me enough for the both of us. Through him, I begin to experience this thing called hope. Doctors can’t fix me, my parents can’t either, but maybe it’s not me who needs fixing.

After all, mental is only a state of mind. It all depends on who’s doing the thinking.

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