From the eyes of another common nobody, a guide to help you dodge every little terror life sends your way. Whether you’re battling depression, anxiety, or any other mental disorder, this guide is for you.
First line: “Just about every day I wake up and feel like garbage.”
Author: Alee Lythgoe
My edition: Ebook, published in 2016 with 118 pages.
Alee sent me a mail asking if I wanted to read her book; and the humble mail made me smile. Not only did the book’s content interest me, but it was also something I thought that I would be able to see myself in.
About the book’s content
The book is about having depression or anxiety, and kind of how to work through that. What I saw in this book was more of a self-help twist than a memoir, because I felt like I was being told how to best live with depression and/or anxiety. The content is important, depression and anxiety aren’t things we are commonly open about to others and it’s so important that we talk about it. For me, this book had the content; it just needed to be written differently, if that makes sense?
I went into this book with the interest of reading about someone else who had depression and anxieties, and I wanted so much to learn something new, to kind of see what depression and anxiety is for someone other than myself. So I wasn’t what I would call disappointed, I was just surprised about how the genre went from memoir to self-help in two sentences, but I kept reading and it wasn’t a bad experience because the content was interesting. It was a lot I could draw from this book, and I saw myself in a lot of what she wrote about.
Because she takes up things like how to be happy, how to be honest and how to plan your future. It’s also about how you can avoid stress, how to tackle something as complex as depression and how bad people tend to draw a lot of energy from you. It’s what I would call something that people from the ages of 13 and up need to read, because it’s got so much important content for people younger than me; and my age of course. But I thought, after finishing this book, that I wished the 13-year-old-me had this book.
The writing is good, I have nothing to say about the writing at all. She uses metaphors so that the reader can more easily understand what she’s trying to explain. It’s often easier to relate to things we know about in order to understand the content.
What put me off, and I actually sent Alee a message asking her about this; was why she never uses capital letters. Alee messaged me back and explained that she doesn’t use it because she rarely use capital letters when writing with other people; and in a way I can understand the reason for it because it makes it more personal. It’s her way of telling you her story in the most personal way. For the reader it’s unclear; we don’t know that’s why and to be honest it made the book so much more difficult to read. I couldn’t differentiate commas from punctuation marks because there were no capital letters, and I sometimes read things wrong because of that and it became this frustrating thing for me.
So it’s difficult to actually decide if a book is good or bad because of the choices made when writing it; but it kind of stopped me from enjoying the book as much as I wanted to.
Another thing that was a little weird for me, was that I didn’t feel like I read someone else’s experiences because the book kept referring to me as the reader.
“don’t ever get yourself into a situation that you’re unable to commit to.”
So I felt like I was constantly being told what to think and do, and it didn’t really do anything for me other than sometimes annoy me. We all have different encounters with depression and anxiety, or everything that can be categorized as a mental disorder. Some things work for one person, and other things work for another person, that’s just how treatment is; and because of the way this book was written I sometimes felt myself feeling like I’d done things wrong; don’t misunderstand me, but struggling with both depression and anxiety myself I felt like this book told me how I should have done everything and she made it sound so easy at times.
It’s an really interesting book, and I liked it to the extent where I wished it was written more in the style of her experiences rather than how to do things her way. The themes of the book is so important, and this should have been a book that teens should be “made” to read because it’s important for everyone to understand what depression and anxiety is and how it is to actually live with it; and how to work yourself through it. I wish there were capital letters; I really do, because it made this book so hard to read and that was a big part of why this book got fewer stars.
Probably not, not because it’s not a good book, but because I rarely buy memoirs or self-help books because I often find myself reading them once and then never really picking them up again.
If you’re a teen from the age of 13 and up, read it. If you’re someone who is, or have struggled with depression or anxiety, read it. If you’re someone who has a friend or a family member struggling with depression or anxiety, read it.
“You can’t run away from this problem. You’ve still got a hill to climb to fix yourself.”