by Felicia Johnson


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780615823454
Publisher: 8th Street Publishing
Publication date: 05/22/2013
Pages: 478
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.06(d)

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Her 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
thebeeb More than 1 year ago
It's not often that I am required to read a book for my volunteer work with the National Alliance on Mental Illness and end up enjoying it and getting as much out of it as I did with Ms. Felicia Johnson's novel, "Her." Her writing really spoke to me, it was like she was in my head! The only other authors I have felt that connection with have been the late Dr. Maya Angelou, Margaret Atwood, and Robert Graves. This book really hit me where I lived. "Her" is the story of Kristen Elliot, a young woman who attempts suicide at the age of 17, and is sent to an inpatient psychiatric hospital, Bent Creek, on the Adolescent Unit. There, she meets other young people with whom she shares the common bond of mental illness, and a difficult home life. She makes friends with some of the other kids on the unit. Together, they learn about themselves, and they support each other. However, some of them are discharged from the unit, and two attempt suicide and are transferred to other facilities, which takes a toll not only on the other patients on the unit, but on the staff, as well. The staff at Bent Creek are by and large (with one creepy exception) a caring and compassionate team who look out for the young people in their charge. Kristen's first doctor's contract comes to an end, or so she is told, and he stops working in the hospital. She is then assigned to Dr. Pelchat, who diagnoses her with Borderline Personality Disorder, after a careful process of observation and testing. He gives her a book to read about Borderline Personality Disorder, and he educates her on coping skills and managing her thoughts and behavior patterns. He arranges a session first with Kristen and her mother, and then, prior to discharge, with Kristen and her whole family. After the healing process she experienced at the hospital, Kristen is deemed ready to be discharged. She feels she is ready. However, she experiences a setback and ends up back in the hospital again. However, this time it seems that she has finally conquered her inner demons and she is ready to move on to her life in recovery. She is reunited with her family. It seems that her mother finally knows what to do to help Kristen maintain her recovery, and she is willing to do it, in order to keep all her children safe. Did I find the ending totally believable? I had my doubts that someone would learn how to get rid of their bad patterns that they've built up over a lifetime all at once, but then again, I'm a middle-aged person, not an eighteen-year old. I would not shut the door on the hopeful possibility that people really can change, once they have insight and know what to do to effect change. I would recommend this book to anyone who wishes to know more about what it's like to live with a mental illness, specifically Borderline Personality Disorder, or anyone who wants to understand someone who lives with the condition. I would also recommend it to anyone who is looking for an emotionally challenging but fulfilling novel to read!
CrystalMarie218 More than 1 year ago
3.5 Stars! I feel that by me reading and rating this book is not really fair. This book touched way to close to home for me. Everything that happened in this book (well almost everything) I went through with someone very close to me. That being said, I will admit that the author was DEAD ON with her description of what a residential treatment center was like and what happens beyond those four walls. In this book we meet Kristin who is a very tortured soul who also has a mental illness. We follow her journey through a botched suicide attempt, her treatment in residential care, and a small peek of her life afterwards. She felt alone in her grief and suffering and used cutting as a method to deal with this. I know there are tons of teenagers that also go through this and my heart breaks every time I hear or read about one. I feel this would be a great read for a younger girl who may be dealing with these emotions or a parent who is new to this sort of thing. I felt that maybe the beginning of the book was too preachy, as in describing everything that goes on in the treatment center and such, and didn't focus enough on how Kristen was really feeling. To be honest, in the beginning, I had a really hard time getting into this book. That is why I feel it wasn't fair for me. I knew all this stuff already having gone through it. I am sure someone who has not been through this would find it very interesting and would hold their attention. The one thing I did want to hear more about wasn't really explained as well and that was Borderline Personality Disorder. It interested me enough to do some research about it on my own however. I found it troubling that it seemed all of Kristin's friends were so perfect. But then I thought, maybe it was the disease that made her mind make them so perfect? Everything I thought I understood sort of went out the window once she was diagnosed and made me wonder if her idea of what was reality was a bit askew. "Lexus and I lived on the same planet, but we were from different worlds." I did enjoy watching Kristen open up to her doctors and the counselors slowly over her course of treatment. The author also didn't use the "oh she is getting help so everything is all sunshine and rainbows now." She had deep troubles and one week and a new medication wasn't just going to help her. Another thing I wish had been explored further was the abrupt leaving of Dr. Cuvo. It was alluded at as to why he had to leave however I guess I just needed it spelled out for me. Overall, I think this is a great read for a younger group. I would definitely classify it as young adult to a point although it deals with some deep subjects. But overall, we learn that what really matters is the will to live. "Now I see what being a survivor really is. It's not giving up. It's not running away. It's getting through whatever it is you have to get through to make it." Reviewed by Mystery Reviewer for Crystal's Many Reviewers *ARC provided for honest review*
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great story