Ultimate Popsugar Reading Challenge discussion

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2018 archive > May Challenge - I finished!

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message 1: by Sara (new)

Sara This thread is to mark your completion of the May challenge for the prompt: "a book about mental health." You can join in with the group read of Turtles All the Way Down or pick a different book to satisfy this challenge.

Please include the following:

Title:
Author:
What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? Do you feel the book handled the topic well?
Would you recommend?

No other posts in this thread please!


message 2: by Johanne (last edited May 01, 2018 04:24AM) (new)

Johanne *the biblionaut* | 1301 comments I read my book about mental health in February. It probably only works for Danish speakers (readers), but here goes anyway:

Title: Fuglemanden (means The birdman)
Author: Sarah Engell and illustrator Lilian Brøgger
What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? Do you feel the book handled the topic well?
It´s a graphic novel where the main character develops skizofrenia/ a psychosis. Birds play a big role in the book. The illustrations depict eerily well the reality distortions the girl sees/ feels.
Would you recommend?
Definitely. To anyone who understands Danish, but may also work if you don´t, due to the illustrations that tell a main part of the story.


message 3: by Nadine in NY (new)

Nadine in NY Jones | 7245 comments Mod
I accidentally filled this category a while back - I didn't read the book specifically for this Challenge, but once I was reading it, I realized it fit this category.

Title: Freshwater
Author: Akwaeke Emezi
What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? Do you feel the book handled the topic well? This is sort of a "magical realism" book (which is usually a sub genre I do not like, this is an exception for me), the protagonist was an ogbanje (an Igbo term for a baby inhabited by an evil spirit causing the child to die and be repeatedly reincarnated) inhabited by multiple gods, some of them influenced her personality and actions, some of them actually took over, sort of a split-personality thing. The presence of the gods was what caused the protagonist's mental break, but the gods also tried to protect her.
Would you recommend? Yes! This book was unlike anything I'd read before. I loved the writing style, and I look forward to what this author writes next.


message 4: by Kristina (new)

Kristina (baronessekat) | 112 comments I finished this category last month

Title: The Lonely City: Adventures in the Art of Being Alone

Author:Olivia Laing

What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? Do you feel the book handled the topic well? this book dealt with the unique experience of feeling utterly alone while living in a city of a million people. It also looked at how famous artists who have lived in NYC expressed that abject loneliness in their work. I liked it better when it wasn't looking at the lives of the artists and just dealt with what the author experienced and how it was reflected in the artwork. It often felt like it went off on too many tangents

Would you recommend? not particularly


message 5: by Heather (new)

Heather (heatherbowman) | 734 comments Title: The Great Alone
Author: Kristin Hannah

What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? The father suffers from PTSD after coming home from the Vietnam War.

Do you feel the book handled the topic well? Yes. I think this book showed that we should have compassion for those who suffer from mental illness. The father is given a solution to his behavior rather than a punishment several times and everyone is pretty forgiving of things like his paranoia and restlessness. But he is still held accountable for his domestic violence because nothing can excuse hurting others.

Would you recommend? Absolutely! This was a fantastic book.


message 6: by Verena (new)

Verena (verb1) | 13 comments Title: Turtles All the Way Down
Author: John Green

What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? Do you feel the book handled the topic well?
The main character has OCD. I don't have this disorder, and I do not know anybody well who has OCD, so I cannot compare the representation in the book to any personal experiences. It did seem very well-represented though. I found out that John Green has OCD, which explains why the book handles it well.

Would you recommend? I'm undecided. If you enjoy philosophical contemporary YA fiction, you could give it a try.


message 7: by Tiffany (new)

Tiffany | 0 comments I read Lighter Than my Shadow by Katie Green. It was a graphic memoir about eating disorders. I felt this was represented well. The pictures were especially haunting.

Would I recommend? I think so but it could be triggering for people struggling with eating disorders.


message 8: by Nerdy Panda (new)

Nerdy Panda (twobrokegirlswithbooks) (_readingpanda_) | 50 comments Title: Girl in Pieces
Author: Kathleen Glasgow
What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? Do you feel the book handled the topic well? Self-harm. Yes. The story was raw and so genuine.
Would you recommend? Trigger warning for self-harm. It's slow-moving, but a book that deserves to be read.


message 9: by Rilly (new)

Rilly | 4 comments I read Turtles All the Way Down by John Green
What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book?
OCD

Do you feel the book handled the topic well?
This does a good job at portraying OCD, demonstrated the how it may feel while maintaining the main character's dignity.

Would you recommend?
It is a good read, but I didn't find it particularly moving (though perhaps that's the genius of it).


message 10: by Megan (new)

Megan Bowder | 53 comments Title: Turtles All the Way Down
Author:John Green

What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? OCD
Do you feel the book handled the topic well? I think the book portrayed OCD well.
Would you recommend? I'd recommend the book for those that enjoy YA fiction.


message 11: by John (new)

John | 79 comments Title: Turtles All the Way Down
Author: John Green
What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? OCD
Do you feel the book handled the topic well? I'm not personally familiar with OCD, but as somebody who has been diagnosed with depression and high anxiety with the same medication that the protagonist take, the book struck a key with me and I felt a connection to her (even though i'm literally like twice her age lol)
Would you recommend? I would most certainly recommend this as talking point for many mental disorders. Even though the main character suffered from OCD/High Anxiety this could help out many young adults discuss their particular mental health battles.


message 12: by Simant (new)

Simant Verma (allthatissim) | 72 comments Title: Tiffany Sly Lives Here Now
Author: Dana L. Davis
What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? Do you feel the book handled the topic well?
The main character Tiffany suffered from generalized anxiety and OCD. Yes, this book handled this anxiety thing really well.
Would you recommend? Yes, totally. This book covers so many themes apart from mental health.


message 13: by Gerry (new)

Gerry Howley | 5 comments Title: The Bell Jar
Author: Sylvia Plath

What aspect of mental health was covered: it’s not stated explicitly, but depression and suicidal thoughts.

Was this done well: it’s a semi-autobiographical first person account of Plath’s own struggle with mental health issues. I would say it’s done well.

Would you recommend? Absolutely. It made me laugh out loud and cry. It’s beautiful and made even more poignant in the knowledge that she really went through these experiences and did eventually take her own life.


message 14: by Cindy (new)

Cindy Title:Turtles All the Way Down
Author: John Green

What element of mental health was involved: OCD
Did the book handle the topic well: I think it did a very good job of describing what a person with a mental illness endures on a daily basis. It would at least get a conversation started.

Would I recommend it: No, I did not like the story. Too many weird plot lines. If you like YA books I might recommend it.


message 15: by Milena (last edited May 12, 2018 07:49PM) (new)

Milena (milenas) | 994 comments Title:Turtles All the Way Down
Author:John Green
What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? Do you feel the book handled the topic well? OCD, anxiety. I feel the book handled anxiety well. I have anxiety, and I am familiar with the thought spirals. I have no experience with OCD, so can't comment on that aspect.
Would you recommend? I would recommend this book for people that enjoy YA literature.


message 16: by Gabi (new)

Gabi (eeclayton) | 30 comments Gerry Howley wrote: "Title: The Bell Jar
Author: Sylvia Plath

What aspect of mental health was covered: it’s not stated explicitly, but depression and suicidal thoughts.

Was this done well: it’s a semi-autobiograph..."


I also read The Bell Jar and I second Gerry's comment!


message 17: by Angie (new)

Angie | 28 comments Title: Turtles All the Way Down
Author: John Green
What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? Anxiety and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (which is another variety of anxiety)
Do you feel the book handled the topic well? Yes, as a person who works in the mental health field, I think Mr. Green did an excellent job of portraying OCD and the panic attacks that Aza suffered.
Would you recommend? Maybe, it was realistic but I didn't connect with any of the characters despite the struggles each went through.


message 18: by Alee (new)

Alee Hofman | 7 comments Title: Turtles All the Way Down
Author: John Green
What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? Anxiety/OCD
Do you feel the book handled the topic well? I enjoyed hearing the depictions of how Green described Aza's episodes--seemed very realistic.
Would you recommend? No, this book dragged and I felt like more should have occurred during the book than did. Kinda disappointing.


message 19: by Rachel (new)

Rachel A. (abyssallibrarian) | 636 comments Title: Turtles All the Way Down
Author: John Green
What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? Do you feel the book handled the topic well?
It was about OCD and anxiety, and I think it was represented well. I also really liked how the book also addressed how other people reacted to Aza's mental health condition.

Would you recommend? Yes, although I'm still not a fan of the whole billionaire thing.


message 20: by Carol (new)

Carol Roote | 117 comments Title: Turtles All the Way Down
Author: John Green
What element of mental health was involved? Do you feel that the book handled it well? OCD/anxiety; Yes, if anything I think John Green toned it down a bit, but it was a glimpse into what people suffering from OCD go through from someone who suffers from it himself.
Would you recommend? Yes! I give it 5 stars.


message 21: by Monica (new)

Monica (monica020) | 60 comments Title: The Woman in the Window
Author: A.J. Finn
Mental Health Disorder: Agorophobia, PTSD
Handled well? I would say so
Would you recommend? No but only because I haven't like a protagonist who is a drunk.


message 22: by Simant (new)

Simant Verma (allthatissim) | 72 comments Title: Starfish
Author: Akemi Dawn Bowman
What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? Do you feel the book handled the topic well?
This book represented social anxiety and it was done brilliantly. It had lot of diversity and also there are other issues like childhood abuse. I was able to relate to the main character Kiko in so many ways.
Would you recommend? Yes, definitely


message 23: by Teri (last edited May 23, 2018 12:17PM) (new)

Teri (teria) | 1360 comments Title: Turtles All the Way Down
Author: John Green

What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? Do you feel the book handled the topic well? OCD and anxiety
It was handled really well. The descriptions of what she was going through taught me so much about a type of anxiety that I have had to a small extent.

Would you recommend? I would recommend to someone interested in the topic. I had a hard time deciding how to rate it because I didn't love it as the subject matter was so difficult, but it was eye-opening and interesting and informative as far as the mental health issues were concerned. The underlying billionaire story was less interesting.


message 24: by Taylor (new)

Taylor | 178 comments Title: Turtles All the Way Down
Author: John Green

What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? Do you feel the book handled the topic well? OCD, from what I know of OCD and from what others have said it appears that the book did handle it well. The writing also had a way of making me feel anxious at times for Aza so I guess that's a good thing!

Would you recommend? Maybe. I didn't think it was all that great but it wasn't bad either.


message 25: by Giulia (new)

Giulia | 42 comments Title: The Bell Jar
Author: Sylvia Plath
What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? Depression.
Do you feel the book handled the topic well? Yes, I think so.
Would you recommend? Definitely. It's poignant but has many funny moments. Also it's sad to know that Plath took her own life a short time after writing it.


message 26: by Andy (new)

Andy (convalian) | 6 comments Title: Turtles All the Way Down
Author: John Green
What element of mental health was involved? Do you feel that the book handled it well? OCD and anxiety. I think it was handled well.
Would you recommend? Yes, I already have .


message 27: by Cornerofmadness (new)

Cornerofmadness | 490 comments Title: Buddha's Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love, and Wisdom
Author: Rick Hanson
What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book?
Depression and anxiety mostly and the neurophysiology behind them.
Do you feel the book handled the topic well? Absolutely
Would you recommend? Yes and I have. It never occurred to me that there was an evolutionary bias to negativity and how the whole fight or flight system plays into that. It was helpful to know I'm not the only one who replays negative memories and how evolution drove that sort of behavior.


message 28: by Sonali (new)

Sonali Ekka | 86 comments Title: Turtles All the Way Down
Author: John Green
What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? Anxiety
Do you feel the book handled the topic well? I don't know much about anxiety related disorders but I think the book dealt with it in . balanced manner, neither overdoing it and being too cliched, nor being too vague.
Would you recommend? Yes.


message 29: by Megan (new)

Megan | 335 comments Title: Sharp Objects
Author: Gillian Flynn
What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? Do you feel the book handled the topic well? The main character, Camille, was released from a brief stay in a psychiatric hospital shortly before the story begins; she is a cutter. I felt that the book did a great job of explaining Camille's thought processes, urges, and why she chose to cut herself. There are other mental health elements to the story, but I hesitate to say more because of potential spoilers.
Would you recommend? Yes, but only if you are comfortable with uncomfortable stories. Like Dark Places and Gone Girl, this one is dark and twisty with "unlikeable" characters. I like my psychological thrillers with an edge, and this one checked that box for sure.


message 30: by Cendaquenta (new)

Cendaquenta | 704 comments Title: Cheer Up Love: Adventures in depression with the Crab of Hate
Author: Susan Calman
What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? Do you feel the book handled the topic well? - It's about depression, and yes, I think it was done well, though, as Susan takes pains to point out, every case of depression is different and she can't speak for everyone's experience.
Would you recommend? - I'm not sure. I thought the book was decent but I wasn't blown away or anything. Certainly wouldn't discourage anyone from reading it though.


message 31: by Kim (new)

Kim | 169 comments Nadine wrote: "I accidentally filled this category a while back - I didn't read the book specifically for this Challenge, but once I was reading it, I realized it fit this category.

Title: [book:Freshwater|35412..."


Thanks for sharing this! This book just came in on my Overdrive, and I have been wondering what prompt I could make the book fit!


message 32: by Tania (new)

Tania | 44 comments Title: Turtles All the Way Down
Author: John Green
What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? Do you feel the book handled the topic well? OCD & anxiety. I think the book did a good job describing how it feels to have OCD and anxiety.
Would you recommend? No. I didn’t enjoy this book and only kept reading because I hate leaving books unfinished and I wanted to know why so many liked this book. I’m still confused why this book is so popular, but oh well!


message 33: by Jessica (new)

Jessica Andersen (jessmary) | 16 comments Title: Furiously Happy: A Funny Book About Horrible Things
Author:Jenny Lawson
What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book?
Lawson deals with depression and anxiety.

Do you feel the book handled the topic well?
I do feel like she handles the topic well. Obviously it doesn't affect everyone the same way and what works for her will not work for everyone. But she does provide some ways of reframing things that I thought were helpful and that I know have been helpful to other people who have struggled with depression and anxiety.

Would you recommend?
I would recommend this book. It's funny but also talks about an important topic that is too often swept under the rug or made light of, and I think this book could help people who don't suffer feel more empathy for those they know who do have depression or anxiety.


message 34: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer Buley | 46 comments Title: Everything Here Is Beautiful
Author:Mira T. Lee

What element of mental health was involved in your chosen book? The book involved a character that had schizophrenia/bipolar disorder.

Do you feel the book handled the topic well? Although I don't know anyone personally with these disorders it seemed like a good representation. It did a pretty good job of also showing the way this disorder affected her loved ones.

Would you recommend? Honestly, probably not. Although an interesting book, I just got bored with it about halfway through and don't know very many people that I feel would enjoy the story.


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