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3.69  ·  Rating details ·  36 ratings  ·  31 reviews
Summer of 2006. Four childhood best friends. A family secret.

After a strange encounter leaves him hospitalized, a timid teenage boy named Matt "Matty" Smith comes home to a continuous series of events met with anxiety, depression, and PTSD.

Under the guardianship of his grandma, Lucia, Matt lives with unspoken questions about his deceased grandpa and father, and his missing
Kindle Edition, 306 pages
Published June 12th 2020 by Natalie Rodriguez
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Average rating 3.69  · 
Rating details
 ·  36 ratings  ·  31 reviews

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Khyati Gautam
Jul 16, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Elephant by Natalie Rodriguez is an insane coming-of-age psychological suspense novel. It is a book that talks in good detail about the crucial subject of mental health. No, there are no lessons, no preach. Rather, there is a character that deals with the intricacies of his mind. A character that is grieving and battling with his own self while searching for his answers. It is a book that translates the emotions of friendship, fear, anxiety, guilt, and love to create a vivid image of the story.

Namita Pal
Jul 21, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"There are no big or small achievements in life. Everything is larger than life".
📕 'Elephant' by Natalie Rodriguez is a young adult psychological suspense novel. It is one hell of a book that talks precisely about mental health. Protagonist 'Matty' is a teenager and he lives with his grandmother. He is traumatized after the occurance of an unfortunate event. He was clueless about it, there were many unanswered questions in his mind for which he was getting no answers. That trauma lead to post-t
Boyko Ovcharov
Jan 04, 2021 rated it it was amazing
The Elephant in the Room

In other words, the obvious problems that are present in our world, society, families today. The uneasy issues that inevitably arise from miscommunication, bad parenthood, lack of sufficient protection for the vulnerable, lack of social awareness — whatever the reason might be, the results are grim. And there is something that must be done at various levels — be it legislative, social, educational etc.
Talking about mental health and well-being as a whole, we need to analy
Erik McManus
Jan 11, 2021 rated it it was ok
I honestly did not really enjoy this book. I thought that the story/plot was all over the place and very hard to follow. We are so focused on this one character the whole time and even then, you don’t really get to know them because the book doesn’t really flow well.

Half the time, you don’t know what is real and what isn’t. There is some big secret that everyone is trying to uncover and there is never really a resolution for anything that happens in the book. It was set up to have a sequel but I
Nomadic  Musings
Jul 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mental-health
Elephant is a YA psychological suspense book written by Natalie Rodriguez. It is the story of a teenage boy Matthew Jimmy Smith (Matty/Matt) who lives with his grandmother Lucia. Matt has three dear friends Derek, Lisa and Jamie. A strange incident leaves Matt in a trauma which consequently turns into Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Because of all this, he ends up being hospitalized, where he still gets a memory of that incident with a lot of unanswered questions. He keeps asking his frien ...more
Melina Lobo
May 21, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Note: The version I have read and reviewed may vary from the final version that comes out.
“She’s hurting like the rest of us, but, sometimes, we just need to grieve, alone.”
After Matty experiences a trauma that leaves him with severe PTSD and depression, he needs answers.
But the only people who can provide him with the answers he needs (i.e. his friends and grandmother) refuse to answer any questions about his past.
When a strange accident leaves Matty hospitalised, he is forced to encounte
Parul Gupta
Oct 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
When you pick up a fiction after years, it has to hit on the spot!
And this one is a brilliant write by Natalie Rodriguez.

While we all have been talking about mental health lately, there is another perspective to it which takes you back to the roots. The early life adversities are one of the major reasons that cause anxiety, depression and suicidal tendencies later in life.

An intense psychological Novel, this book will keep you on edge with the curiosity of what comes next! The book revolves ar
Faeeja Humaira Meem
Nov 13, 2020 rated it really liked it
Thanks to Booktasters I was able to get a free digital ARC of this book.

"Elephant" is a YA suspense novel by Natalie Rodriguez that combines several layers of mental health issues: PTSD, depression, and anxiety, and where Matty Smith goes through inexplicable experiences that leave him mentally unstable. Matt lives with his grandma, and the book revolves around four childhood friends and undisclosed family history. Matt encounters a strange event that triggers depression, anxiety, and trauma he
Jun 19, 2020 rated it really liked it
Elephant by Natalie Rodriguez is a story about a protagonist Matthew Jimmy Smith or Matty. Matt, a teenager lived with his grandmother Lucia. He sometimes wonders about his grandfather and his parents. Due to the mental trauma that Matt was going through, everything seemed chaotic in his life.

As the story progresses, Matt heard voice of Abyss girl? Who is she? What does Elephant in the room actually means? Read the story to know yourself.

Like Matt many kids are timid and they have so many ques
Shane Reid
Nov 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I was given a digital ARC of this book by BookSirens, thank you so much for letting me read it!

ELEPHANT is a YA thriller/suspense novel that combines several layers of mental health issues: PTSD, depression, and anxiety. It's from the main perspective of Matt, a boy who lives with his grandma, and has an extremely shadowed past. All he knows is that his grandfather and father died in a car accident years before. On Matt's 14th birthday, a freak accident occurs, landing Matt in hospital with no c
Jul 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amazing Thriller story

Book : Elephant
Author : Natalie Rodriguez

Have you ever been in depression? This book is amazingly a different one. This is based on psychological thriller story. This is not a short read . The language used in this book is very easy and understanding though the story in the mid of the book is quite confusing .

This book is about a boy named Matt who lives with his grandma, Luci. Matt is having three friends named as Jamie, Derek and Lisa. The bond between them is so pure and
Jul 03, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First off, thanks to Booktasters for putting me through to the author.
Now the review.
When I think of books on mental health, I usually think of self-help books. Elephant is not. It's a story. And it's a good one.
It follows a boy, Matty, who deals with some trauma caused by an event that he can't seem to remember. The good part is that he has the help of his grandmother and friends who, in their way, help him cope with what he's dealing with. The way this book tackles mental health is really goo
Jun 22, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thank you to the publisher and Book sirens for sending me this book in exchange for my honest review

One day Matt our main character is involved in a strange accident that leaves him in the hospital. After this accident Matt begins struggling with various mental illnesses ie. ptsd, anxiety, and depression. With the recent events he is being forced to uncover secrets from his past.

I found this book to have a very intriguing theme and was very interested after reading the synopsis. After p
Jun 19, 2020 rated it really liked it
Have you ever start befriending something which is metaphorical to your state of mind?
'Elephant by Natalie Rodriguez' is a coming of age novel. Matt A. K. A. Matty Smith faces a shocking encounter which leaves him depressed, choking nightmares and panic attacks. He starts living with his grandmother, Lucia who tries to help him in keeping a balance.
'Elephant' in his room is metaphorical. It depicts how heavily Matt is disturbed with his encounter of an uneventful situation.
The book's spotli
Sonam Shukla
Jul 04, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

This book belongs to young adult suspense genre, something I have been exploring a lot lately. Okay, so the protagonist Matthew Smith is a teenager who live with his grandma, Matthew was going through a mental trauma that caused him depression, his life was quite chaotic. Depression and anxiety are the star topics of this book also, it being quite usual these days it's important to talk about it as much as we can and normalise it. This definitely has grown my fondness for the book. Why
Nanette Fandino-Diaz
The author has wonderful prose. She develops the scenes, the description is well constructed, the feelings and the emotions of the characters come across. The premise of the story is also very good.

Yet, there were some consistent problems with the story that I cannot ignore. First, it needs another go through with a proofreader for grammar and usage. Second, each chapter is like a stand alone scene. They are not being threaded together. This makes the reading of the chapter disjointed. I had to
Uru Patel
Jul 18, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Written Review Of "Elephant" By Natalie Rodriguez

Available On : Amazon
Pages : 257
Genre : Fiction

The Story Is About A Boy Matt Who Lives With Her Granny, Luci He Has Three Friends And He Get Panic Attacks And He Had Been Hospitalized. He Got All This Due To Mental Pressure And Anxiety. Its A Unique & Amazing Read. You Have To Read This Book To Know All.

The Vocabulary Of The Book Is Good & Author Has Narrated This Story Very Nicely. The Language Of The Book Is Also Easy So Even If You're A Beginne
Esther Peacock
May 27, 2020 rated it really liked it
Elephant by Natalie Rodriguez is a coming of age story.

Matty Smith has experienced a tragedy in his family, but he cannot remember what and it has left him mentally unstable.

A mysterious accident leaves him in hospital. He relies on his grandmother and friends to help him understand what is going on, but they are keeping the truth from him.

Matty's unbalanced mind, continuous anxiety attacks, depression, and PTSD are controlling his daily life, the intricacy of the unfortunate events that are hap
Heber Moran
Oct 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a great way of telling stories... I enjoy every single page... the way of take you and immerse you as a reader making it part of the story. I definitely would read it agian two or three times....
Priyambada Das
Aug 25, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Complex read.

This was quite a confusing read from the very beginning. It continuously swaps between past and present and it took me few pages to get a grasp over the flow. It definitely requires undivided attention to understand the underlying concept of this heavy plot and the deep rooted trauma in Matty's character. The plot is as complex as the human mind itself.

The intricate and vivid imagery of each one of Matty's thought made me very uncomfortable. This sneak peak into a teenager's priva
Rita Sophie
Oct 03, 2020 rated it really liked it
Matt is fourteen – just at the beginning of the book his grandmother and friends are celebrating his birthday. Lots of junk food, short phrases and bright descriptions, very visual and initially hard to go along with.
Matt is fourteen and his friends are fourteen as well. And their memories are short, and the descriptions are repetitive, some swearing here and there, and a lot of blank spaces the reader has to fill in, but it’s just as if listening to a story told by four adolescents.
Movies and
Rutuja Ramteke
Jun 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
💞The story isn't about elephants at all, it's a YA fictional which talks about mental health in the first place. But to be more specific it talks about Matt, who isn't feeling much great and he is suffering from anxiety, depression and also comes across the feeling of being alone, we all feel alone sometimes but it's all okay, but what about if we feel unhappy, alone and depressed all the time? I loved the concepts that are talked about in this book, I loved how Matt and Lucia his grandma was bu ...more
Dec 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
Elephant by Natalie Rodriguez begins with Matt Smith, a teenager with a seemingly normal life, his three best friends Derek, Lisa, and Jamie who is also a potential love interest.

Matt's grandmother who was his only surviving family and care taker has only one thing centered around her life, her grandchild, Matt.

Matt, Jamie, Lisa and Derek appear to have a normal stereotypical teenage life, forming a click away from the cool kids crowd in school, his friends with their contrasting personalities s
Charlotte Cade
This book takes a while to get into, but once started the themes of trauma and relationships and the impact these can have are interwoven nicely. The chaos and confusion caused by trauma and various associated mental illnesses are clear with the narrative style, although I think a greater introduction to the story (what do the italics mean, how is it narrated) may serve to increase the mystery of the story and make it more gripping rather than taking away from the tension. It felt like as a read ...more
Nov 19, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Elephant is a gripping book written by Natalie Rodriguez. In other to read this book you have to be mentally ready to read it and understand. At the beginning I couldn't relate to the characters well but as I progressed I was able to.
This Psychological Suspense book is basically on Mental Health. We could see that in Matty a teenager who greatly suffered this. Unfortunately this led to PTSD and he got hospitalized.
We're in a generation where so many people have so many mental issues. Our menta
Manab J Kalita
Oct 14, 2020 rated it it was ok
It was an okayish book from my POV. The issue of mental health being the prime theme, the book could have done so much better with some fluidity in the writing. While reading through, it was pretty confusing piecing together the story. I simply hope that the author gets better in her future projects.
Aug 06, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I received an ARC for honest review. This was not for me. It is a psychological thriller and book 1 of a series. I was very confused by the flashbacks (or were they?). I think the author captures early teens emotion and how adults treat them very well.
Jul 12, 2020 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I can't read this. The writing is awful. Everything about it awful. Absolute rubbish!

Thanks but no thanks!
Dec 02, 2020 rated it liked it
I chose this book because I found the theme interesting, having suffered from anxiety and depression myself. Frankly, I had a difficult time getting into it. Despite plopping the reader in the middle of everything, where characters are already dead and others are already having attacks from their mental illness, I found the story to be slow and dragging at times. Other times I got confused as to where we are in the timeline; add to this the many asterisks and italicized text. I had to repeat the ...more
Shey Saints
Apr 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Elephant by Natalie Rodriguez is a coming of age story about Matty Smith who went through inexplicable experiences that left him mentally unstable. There has been a tragedy in his family that he couldn’t remember. Then, a mysterious accident leaves him hospitalized. Not knowing the truth, he only has his own grandmother and friends to enlighten him, except they kept the truth from him. With unsettled mind, incessant attacks of anxiety, depression, and PTSD occupy his daily life, and the v
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NATALIE RODRIGUEZ is an award-winning writer, director, and mental health and anti-violence/trauma advocate based in Los Angeles, CA. In 2014, she graduated from California State University, Fullerton with a Bachelor of Arts in Radio-Television-Film. Her first experience in entertainment was an internship at the Conan O'Brien show and Peter Guber's Mandalay Pictures, where she worked at the office ...more

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