Friday, 4 November 2011

The book I am most thankful for.

So Beth Revis has asked readers to make a post about the book they are most thankful for. I thought long and hard about what book I'm most grateful for, before I got my answer. I'm grateful to a lot of books, most of which I'm sure many people have mentioned many times over.

But the book that has had the most personal impact for me is this book:

Saving Francesca by Melina Marchetta. I think EVERY YA contemp fan has read this book, but in case you haven't, here's the summary for you:

MOST OF MY friends now go to Pius Senior College, but my mother wouldn’t allow it because she says the girls there leave with limited options and she didn’t bring me up to have limitations placed upon me. If you know my mother, you’ll sense there’s an irony there, based on the fact that she is the Queen of the Limitation Placers in my life.

Francesca battles her mother, Mia, constantly over what’s best for her. All Francesca wants is her old friends and her old school, but instead Mia sends her to St. Sebastian’s, an all-boys’ school that has just opened its doors to girls. Now Francesca’s surrounded by hundreds of boys, with only a few other girls for company. All of them weirdos—or worse.

Then one day, Mia is too depressed to get out of bed. One day turns into months, and as her family begins to fall apart, Francesca realizes that without her mother’s high spirits, she hardly knows who she is. But she doesn’t yet realize that she’s more like Mia than she thinks. With a little unlikely help from St. Sebastian’s, she just might be able to save her family, her friends, and—especially—herself.

So why did I pick this book? Well, I first read it back in 2005, at which point I was 15/16 and my mother was struggling with quite severe depression. She'd just recently had a hospital admission which lasted several months following a suicide attempt. This was the latest in a long battle with the illness, and at that point in my life, I really didn't understand depression. I thought my mother was being selfish, cruel, even, for inflicting herself on the rest of my family. I cut myself off emotionally from her, and as a result from everything else in my life. I told myself that I didn't respect a woman who clearly had such little respect for me, my siblings and her own life. And then I found this book. A book in which a teenage girl, of a similar age to me, was dealing with problems similar to mine. HER mother had depression, she didn't understand it, either. She was angry, and confused, and frustrated--just like me. It completely changed my outlook and my attitude towards depression. It dealt with my own fears that I too, would suffer at the hands of the same disease that debilitated my mother. It taught me that there was hope, that I could be happy, and that life could actually be okay. And for that, I will always be eternally grateful both to this book and to Melina for writing such a poignant and appropriate novel. 

Gosh, okay, after about something fun? To commemorate the books we all are thankful for, Beth Revis is doing a super cool and ultra-amazing giveaway of NINETEEN fantastic books. 

So, you should head over to her blog to find out how you can enter this giveaway, but also how you can share the book you're most thankful for as well.


  1. Fantastic post Cait, I really think I'm going to have to pick up a copy of this one. Thanks for sharing :o)

  2. I've heard about this book from a fellow blogger - YA Crush, anyone? - and both bloggers running it recommend this book for now obvious reasons. I'll hunt this one up soon :)

    - Asher (from Paranormal Indulgence)

  3. I have this one on my TBR shelf but still haven't gotten to it. I need to...I really need to.

  4. Wow that's really special that you were able to connect to it like that. It makes me happy that there are books out there containing difficult times and situations so people like us can relate to them and see that we're not alone. <3

  5. See, these are the reasons why books are so important. When you can connect with a story so deeply, relate to a character or situation, it can completely change your life. I'm so glad you discovered this book, clearly the universe sent it to you at the right time! <3

  6. I'm a big fan of contemps but haven't read this one even though its on my TBR pile your post has made me want to pick it up :-)

  7. I love those books that can completely change your outlook on things :). I've never read this one, but it's been added to my TBR. Sounds like a must read to me.

  8. Sorry to say that I haven't read this one, but it sounds fabulous. *adds to tbr*


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