Thursday, June 18, 2015

Persy -- Cut by Patricia McCormick

Callie is in a residential treatment facility for young women called Sea Pines. Except they all just call it Sick Minds. Most of her fellow patients are there for eating disorders or drug addictions. But none of them know why Callie is there. Callie doesn't speak. Not to the other patients, not to the doctors, not to the nurses. These days, even when she tries to speak, she can't make anything come out.

But then one day there's a new patient: Amanda. Amanda cuts herself and is unashamed. She doesn't hide the scars -- she flaunts them. Not like Callie, who hides in her long sleeves and her silence.

In the outside world, Callie's little brother has terrible asthma and her mother worries about everything. Her dad's job doesn't go so well anymore. A lot of responsibility fell on Callie every day -- but not anymore. Now she's just at Sick Minds. To get better, to get treated. So much led up to her entry into Sick Minds -- but will she ever be able to speak?

Some reviewers have said that the characters are stereotypical and flat. This is true. But that doesn't mean they're not realistic as well. Take it from someone who knows.

You also have to keep in mind that this book is only 150 pages long. It's not going on an indepth psychological journey of each and every character. It's more of a statement. A statement about an issue that doesn't really get spoken about a lot. The book itself mentions that people with problems such as eating disorders or substance abuse are relatively "normal", but cutters and self abusers... those are just freaks. For an issue so big, it's remarkably ignored.

Anyway, back to the book. I finished it in one sitting, and not just because it's so short. I really got pulled in right off the bat. For starters, it's written a little like a letter. It's all addressed to Callie's psychiatrist, which is a really cool and effective way to do it.

Also, it's incredibly realistic for only 150 pages. Admittedly, I'm a bit biased. Serious talk here, please forgive me, but I have literally been in Callie's shoes. I've spent time in residential treatment for the exact same reason, and reading Callie's story was practically a walk down memory lane. I don't know how it reads to someone without my experience, but perhaps the guarantee that it IS realistic will change the way you read it.

It's honestly not as horrifying as I was expecting. There is a deep dark secret, but it wasn't as deep and dark as I thought it would be. But that doesn't really take away from what's there.

All in all it's a short little book about a big issue, and you certainly won't waste any time giving it a read. I would DEFINITELY love to know what people who haven't spent time in a loony bin think of this little book, because it has to change your perspective. Y'know, just a little.


You might like this if you: like short little books; like books about mental disorders; like books that address big issues; want to know more about cutting and cutters; or if you are or know someone who cuts

PS. DON'T FORGET ABOUT RYFBM!! Only a few more weeks!

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