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A Divided Mind

4.08  ·  Rating details ·  79 ratings  ·  67 reviews
Sometimes that little voice in your head isn’t always yours.

What if the only friend you have isn’t real? When the voices in his head begin to make sense, high school senior Branson Kovac turns to the one friend he’s still got… only to discover he’s not really there.
Published July 27th 2019 by Hot Tree Publishing
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Bex 'n' Books There is a NA character in this book, but this is most definitely not a coming-of-age book. We dual points of view, one of them being a middle-age…moreThere is a NA character in this book, but this is most definitely not a coming-of-age book. We dual points of view, one of them being a middle-age woman's. (less)
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4.08  · 
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 ·  79 ratings  ·  67 reviews

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Julie (JuJu)
A well-written, emotional journey through a young man’s diagnosis of mental illness and the struggles his family faces. Psychological thrillers with mental illness are usually a big hit with me, but this one doesn’t classify. If you’re looking for a real “thriller”, this isn’t it.

Tara is a twice-divorced mother, with four children from two different fathers. Although her personal life is somewhat of a wreck, she’s successful in her career at Wyoming State University as the Director of Admission
Paula  Phillips
May 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
I wasn't 100% sure what this novel would be about, but as soon as I started reading it. I found myself in my element as a topic that has been massively popular in my reading interests is those edgy books that feature issues with mental health and illnesses. In A Divided Mind by M. Billiter, we have the point of views of Tara, Branson, and Aaron. Tara is a single mother of four children and working at the local college in the admissions office. She has two sons in high school Branson and Aaron an ...more
Kristin Scearce
Dec 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book made me so emotional. I laughed, I cried... and I cried... and I cried. It's so raw and real and just sucks you in right from the start. Such a true testament to what people in this situation go through, not just the individual affected but also their family, friends, and other relationships. I just can't recommend this book enough!
Apr 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
A Divided Mind is an interesting read about a boy who is schizophrenic. I'm glad to read a book that doesn't shy away from mental illness. It's an important topic that needs to be addressed much more often than it actually is. The story is riveting and heart wrenching but also hopeful. I felt sympathetic toward the characters. It's a book to read with an open mind and an understanding that mental illness is very real. Families suffer and adjust as shown in the story. I hope this book speaks to y ...more
Morgan Schulman
Apr 05, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: reader-s-copy
I received an advanced reader’s copy in exchange for an honest review

This book is not really a thriller – it’s a wire novel about a boy dealing with schizophrenia and his family’s adjustment. It’s not a bad book, but by no means a thriller
Rating: 3.5/5.0

Contemporary + Mental illness

The story is about Tara & her son Branson who is suffering from a form of schizophrenia that is called Schizoaffective disorder. The whole story is about how the family will be affected and cope with Branson's illness.

Book Structure:
According to Goodreads, this book is 322 pages, with 39 chapters. The chapters are in decent length. The story is told from two perspectives, Tara's & Branson's.

- Tara's perspective chapters show
Mar 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
As I am writing this, I JUST finished reading A Divided Mind by M. Billiter.

Description: " What if the only friend you have isn't real?

When the voices in his head begin to make sense, high school senior Branson Kovac turns to the one friend he's still got... only to discover he's not really there."

Okay, so this book is being called a psychological thriller. I do not know why. It is not a thriller. It is about a high school senior with schizoaffective disorder (more on that in a sec), and his mo
Catherine ♡
May 26, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: mental-illness
Hm. I really thought this book would be thriller/suspense, but it's really more of a contemporary book on mental illness (which I can still appreciate). It definitely wasn't what I expected, though, and the "friend" mentioned in the blurb doesn't show up until halfway through the book, and by then we already knew that the friend wasn't real. I also wasn't a huge fan of the mom's perspective, and while I liked that it showed the point of view of someone else, reading about her job and things like ...more
Jul 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
Thrillers are often one of my guilty pleasures. So when I saw the gripping cover for A Divided Mind I sort of went in blind. I have not read M. Billiter before so I was also new to her writing. I think I was quite pleasantly surprised by what this book turned into being. I will say right now, this book doesn’t really belong in the thriller category, to me at least. It doesn’t mean this book wasn’t great it is just miscategorized for what the story truly does tell.

What do we get then if not a thr
Allyson Preble
Jul 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
I was attracted to this novel first by the cover, then by the description. I don't know much about schizophrenia but I was interested enough to pick up the book. M. Billiter's writing style is honest and raw, and I found Tara's character a little unbelievable. She seemed more protective and loving towards Branson than her other children. That being said, I am not a mom, so. The contrast between Branson's character and Tara's character helped elevate the novel and made it more captivating. The sc ...more
Review based on ARC (Advanced Readers Copy received for free in exchange for an honest review).

I am always drawn to novels covering psychological issues. In this one, what we know from the start is that the main kid (late-high school twin boy) hears voices in his head. That was enough for me to request the book.

When I received it, contrary to my normal way of proceeding, I read what is called a dedication, but amounts to a sort of mini-introduction. I was pulled in by the pictures, I must confes
Eileen Richards
Jun 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing

This book is a MUST READ for anyone in, or wanting to know more about mental health in the world today. An engrossing story from start to finish INSPIRED by real life. I laughed, cried and cheered for this family and their struggles with fear, misdiagnoses and the often negative stigmatizing of people afflicted with-and affected by mental health/illness today. I finished this read about 10 days ago and it is still in the forefront of my mind. You will not be sorry that you picked up this
I was nervous picking up this book. Mental illness is a tough subject to tackle and is often dramatized to the point of being inaccurate. That was not the case with A Divided Mind.

As someone who actually suffers with the illness written about in A Divided Mind, Billiter did a great job of crafting a realistic portrayal of the illness. The symptoms exhibited by Branson sometimes made the reader question what was real, but I loved that in doing so it helps the reader get further into the mind of s
May 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
ARC received in exchange for a honest review.

I have a lot of time for authors that write the book they want (need) to write and it’s clear that’s what’s happened here.

Tara is a mother of four and at the top of her profession when one of her children tells her something she didn’t see coming.

This book is a journey through mental health. The symptoms, the diagnosis, the treatment and the living with it. It depicts how it affects everyone not just the person diagnosed.

This book is told mostly fr
Rachael Tamayo
May 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: thrillers, suspence
If you have read my book, Crazy Love, then you might already know that I advocate for mental illness. I am pulled in my own reading towards books with a psychological twist, and in my new thrillers I weave it into the threads of the stories. I was eager to get my hands on this one, knowing the history behind it. I picked it up, not sure what to expect, but found myself drawn in and totally fascinated. This book is a page turner. A realistic account of one family’s struggles as a young man descen ...more
Apr 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
Sometimes that little voice in your head isn’t always yours.

What if the only friend you have isn’t real? When the voices in his head begin to make sense, high school senior Branson Kovac turns to the one friend he’s still got… only to discover he’s not really there.

A Divided Mind was listed as Mystery & Thrillers. This is about a young man who is schizophrenic in high school. He was diagnosed with P.T.D.S. and started medication. It was a good book in the touch of someone and their family as
May 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed the majority of this book.
It's a heart wrenching tale of not only having mental illness but coping with that alongside adolescence, spousal abuse, and the stigmatised ideas of medication and treatment.
I must say though, I found Tara rather irritating. I understand to some degree her guilt but also, a lot of the time I just wanted to throat punch her. Her attitude towards some of the issues was just plain unmotherly. I really didn't take to her as a character.
And the epilogue..
Kade Gulluscio
May 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I received this book free from NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.
Thanks NetGalley!

"What if the only friend you have isn't real?"

High school senior Branson hears voices in his head and soon begins to realize that the one friend he has isn't real afterall.

the book has lots of twists and turns. it's told through the POV of Tara, [ bransons mom ] and Branson. This book portrays mental illness.... from the symptoms to the diagnosis to the treatment.. and i think that's extremely important.
May 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
Having always been interested in mental health and mental illness I was really looking forward to reading this book. It was fascinating to hear the mother’s perspective as well as her son’s (the patient). And I definitely did not expect that ending! I will definitely read the sequel. I gave this book 3.5 stars rounded to 4. Many thanks to Tangled Tree Publishing and Netgalley for the opportunity to read an advance copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.
May 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
“Please. We have to fix him. There’s got to be something.”
An account of one family’s struggles as a high schooler descends into mental illness. It is told in dual POV – the son’s perspective and the mother’s perspective. Not only does the son have to come to grips with what is happening to him, but also the entire family and friends. Not only does he want his dreams and goals back, his family wants their son and brother back. A difficult subject that It is written very well with emotional honest
Amy Figueroa
May 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: my-books, arc
I received this book in exchange for an honest review.

I greatly appreciated the chance to read this book. It dives headfirst into the effects of mental illness not only to the person experiencing the disease, but looking at how the family adjusts as well.
While not quite as mysterious as anticipated from the initial teaser/synopsis, there are certainly a few surprising twists in the story that were unexpected despite expecting the anticipated imaginary friend.
Apr 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2019
Wow! This look inside a family and their struggle with mental health gets you right in the feels. As a mom, I couldn't put this down, thinking about how my family would react.

18 year old Branson hears voices. His friend Trevor seems to get him in trouble all the time. In this psychological novel, it is hard to tell what is real and what isn't.

Definitely worth a read!
Ryan Hixson
Jul 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
A Divided Mind by M. Billiter is a good emotional piece about the struggles of a family dealing with one of it's children being a schizophrenic. It's being marked as a thriller and I don't feel it fits that category, general fiction fits it better. The book does have one or two thrilling moments, but it is more of a think piece that show how an individual and his mother deal with the illness. The novel is mainly told through Branson who has schizophrenia and his mother as she deals with the diag ...more
Vivian Stevenson
Jul 07, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: arc
Thank you to Tangled Tree Publishing / Netgalley for allowing me to read this in exchange for an honest review!

This novel was not really what I was expecting. It sounded really good based on the synopsis, but the writing almost felt like young adult (minus all of the curse words).

You follow a few perspectives in this one.

Tara is a mom of four children, two of them are twin boys, Aaron and Branson. She works as a director of college admissions in Wyoming State University. You follow her and he
Jennifer Pierson
Jul 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
A Divided Mind is one of those books that is really hard to review, yet, stays in your head long after you finish it. It's the story of a boy named Branson, who started displaying symptoms of mental illness that manifested itself into an imaginary friend. It's told from his, and his mother Tara's POV. Tara is a single mom who would do anything for her kids, and she does her very best with Branson, but they were put through the ringer for real. And that's all that I really want to say about the d ...more
Jenni Bishop
Jul 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
A Divided Mind by M. Billiter is a fictional story but written from experience. It is well  written and absolutely nothing like I expected. It is a realistic look at a mental disorder  and the struggles that each one affected by it goes through. It is both sad and  frustrating and I went through so many emotions reading it. How do you help someone  with a mental illness? Having experienced a mental health problem myself, and  watching a work friend go through this exact same situation with her s ...more
Jul 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ibbb-year-3
I am not even sure what I want to write about this story. I thought it was going to be a mystery/suspense for some reason. It’s more about coming to terms with mental illness. This is on the heavy side because it’s a teen. So we learn a bit on how he deals with it as well as how his family learns about it and how they deal with it. At the beginning it seemed very confusing. I read the first couple chapters more than once. Trying to figure out whom was actually talking. It said at the beginning o ...more
Maria Vickers
Jul 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
Mind blown. This book surprised me and intrigued me from the beginning to the end. I will warn you that it does deal with mental health, but the author does it in a way that it doesn't make fun of a disease or issue, but enlightens the reader. You not only see the struggle from the point of view of the patient, but of the family and friends as well. As someone who suffers from mental health issues (GAD and depression), I appreciate the story and the message. I firmly believe the more we talk abo ...more
Kerry Baker
Jul 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
A Divided Mind by Mary Billiter is a fantastic story about a teenager struggling with mental illness and learning how to cope with it.
This book is not at all what I was expecting. When I first started reading it I thought it was going to be more of a mystery/thriller type book. When I realised what the story was actually about it intrigued me more. While a lot of books tend to touch on this subject it always seems to be very briefly, and in a minor character. The way the author tries to delve in
Laura Furuta
Jul 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A Divided Mind
By: M. Billiter
5 out of 5 stars

The story A Divided Mind by M. Billiter is a book that is thought-provoking. The story pulled me in from the very beginning and I found myself not able to put it down until I had read the final page. The book revolves around a high school senior, Branson Kovac. He has a friend that he turns to. What happens when he discovers that friend really isn’t there? Read this book to find out. The story is emotional. There are some heartbreaking moments as well
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RABT Book Tours: A Divided Mind by M.Billiter 1 1 Jul 27, 2019 04:14AM  
M. Billiter is the alter ego of contemporary, award-winning romance author, Mary Billliter.

After writing more than a dozen love stories, she is exploring the other side. Best known for her emotional honesty, Mary doesn’t write about well-adjusted people, but rather the wounds in life.

M. Billiter writes with clarity and raw emotion to explore difficult subjects and issues close to her heart.
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