Trigger warning: Depression, suicide
I’ve read loads of books about young adults whose thoughts are plagued by the idea of killing themselves. It’s a tough and delicate subject to broach, but I think that the authors of the books in this list do an authentic job of depicting what it’s like to live with depression. Since September is National Suicide Prevention Month, I would like to highlight books that speak frankly about teens who have struggled with suicide and how it affects their lives and others.
5. Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher
Critically acclaimed and heart-wrenching, Thirteen Reasons Why is one of the best novels that have perfectly explained why a young adult took her life and the events leading up to that dreadful moment.
4. It’s Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini
Light and funny at times, It’s Kind of a Funny Story explores the mind of Craig Gilner. After having a sort of suicidal episode, he finds himself in a psychiatric hospital where he meets a bunch of crazy and not-so-crazy people who change his life.
3. Tears of a Tiger by Sharon M. Draper
Andy is overcome with grief and regret when his best friend dies in a car accident that he caused. Tears of a Tiger looks at the ways Andy tried to deal with the guilt he had for causing one of his closest friends to die and is hard to read at times (especially coming down to the ending). What is most notable about this novel is that it shows readers how to identify the signs of a suicidal individual and how to be there for them before it’s too late.
2. Dessert First by Dean Gloster
The name of this novel might be humorous and there might be a couple funny scenes, but it deals with some hard issues. Kat’s younger brother, Bleep, is in his second cancer relapse and is in dire need of a bone marrow transplant. Kat might be Bleep’s only hope at having a longer life, but Kat is dealing with deep issues of her own.
1. Get Well Soon by Julie Halpern
Anna Bloom is at the height of insecurity and she feels about ready to jump off. Thankfully, before she can make her metaphorical jump, her parents place her in a mental hospital. While the people she meets in the hospital are a … little off, she comes across a boy who she might make staying in that hell hole worth it.
Suicide is, as they say, “a permanent solution to a temporary problem.” It’s a phenomenon that is killing millions of people every day. These books are only a few of the many out there that have managed to expose the reasons why people turn to suicide and how to spot the signs. Below is a list of hotline numbers that you can contact if you, a friend or a loved one is battling with thoughts of suicide. Always remember that you are never alone.
National Suicide Prevention Hotline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
Hopeline: 1-800-SUICIDE (1-800-784-2433)
Crisis Text Line: text START to 741-741