Juvenile Nonfiction / Social Situations / Suicide
How does a beautiful, smart 17 year old with a loving family decide that her life is not worth living any more? How does she decide to lie down on the railway tracks waiting to die? The answer: depression.
Kristen struggling with the affects of sexual assault and what she perceives as the injustice of her parents feels that she has no desire to go on with life. She lays down on the railways tracks and waits to die. The train passes over her – and severs her legs!
Her attempts to run away from emotional pain have caused her to be handicapped, maimed for life. This should have led to her being even more depressed and broken. But instead she finds God and herself through this deep tragedy. With her new-found faith she reaches out to other young people struggling to cope with life and contemplating suicide.
Life, In Spite of Me is the heart-wrenching true story of Kristen Jane Anderson. It tells of the night of her tragedy and chronicles her recovery: learning to walk with prosthetic legs, dealing with depression and the normal questions that young people go through as they attempt to find their way in the world. It tells of the triumph of faith, the human spirit and the value of family and community support in helping us heal.
What I liked: The emotion with which the story is told helps the reader identify the pain and confusion Kristen felt. Her struggle to pretend that she did not attempt suicide because of the guilt that it would cause is also very real. How Kristen deals with her pain, her struggle to find meaning, her journey of faith, and her courage in turning this tragedy in to a mission of reaching out to other youngsters is deeply edifying.
What I didn’t like: The Kindle version that I received was very badly formatted and at times on chapter seemed to run in to another. It made for choppy reading. Also, while I appreciate the inclusion of Kristen’s personal appeals to others suffering with depression and suicidal tendencies, they did not seem to fit in between chapters of her story. These could have been put into a separate section.
This is a book I would recommend as reading for Christian youngsters and those working with depressed and suicidal young people.
Personally, I was deeply inspired by Kristen’s courage and faith.
For the purpose of this review, I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group.
Juvenile Fiction - Religious - Christian - Fantasy
Fiction - Christian - General