2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Brilliant insight into schizophrenia for young adults,
This review is from: Freaks Like Us (Paperback)
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Some years ago I had the idea of writing young adult stories that would introduce the readers to the concepts of various mental illnesses and experiences of those who suffer from them. Clinical Psychologist Susan Vaught has beaten me to it and done a far better job than I ever would have done. The protagonist of the story, Freak, is a boy in his late teens who suffers from schizophrenia. Alongside him are his two best friends Drip, who has ADHD, and Sunshine, who is selectively mute.
At just 240 pages of easy reading Freaks Like Us can be got through quickly. Add in the brilliantly crafted story that keeps you guessing and keeps hinting at things, and you can see how I read this book cover to cover in one sitting! There were times when I was on the edge of my seat in hopeful anticipation, times when I flinched, and times I may have shed a tear or two.
I felt that I could really see inside the mind of someone with schizophrenia, and from my own experience living for 12 years with someone with this illness I can say it seems to be an accurate description. Also accurate was the way the Alphabets (those with various disorder, so called because of the abbreviations of the disorder names) are treated by the Normals; ignored, disregarded, and generally treated as second rate citizens.
But the novel doesn't survive on the mental health aspect alone, and would have still been a decent novel had this element been taken out. All in all an excellent story that pulled me in, took me for an emotional ride, and left me satisfied but hungry for more. I will definitely be checking out this author's other work!