Challenger Deep by Neal Shusterman — February 17, 2016

Challenger Deep by Neal Shusterman

It might take some time to warm up to it, but this book is a YA must read. This book is about a teenage boy, Caden, who is suffering from Schizophrenia. It’s a harrowing journey although it is a harsh read and might be bothering or even triggering to sensitive kids. ┬áThe writing really reels you in and it’s incredibly unnerving and gripping. The writing style feels very natural and I’ll be honest,this is the best book I’ve read in a long while.

It’s great to read a book that captures mental illness as well as Challenger Deep has. The author has a friend who is schizophrenic as well as his son, whose artwork is included throughout the book. I did end up sort of skimming through large portions of the alternate reality, especially in the beginning when it was a bit confusing and without context, but it’s still a lengthy read regardless.

Shusterman did a stunning job illustrating the character’s descent into insanity while maintaining a realism and believably. It almost makes you second guess yourself, how rational the inner dialogue is presented. Top it all off with a good inspiring ending and a sweet, unconventional hospital romance and you’ve got an 8/10 rating.

Pick it up next time you’re at the library. It’ll be worth it.