ISBN-13: 9780738719269
Publisher: Flux
Published: May 2010
277 pgs
Source: Library

I don't think I have ever read a story that features a schizophrenic character. With so many rave reviews I read on A Blue So Dark over the blogosphere, I decided to add this book onto my to-read list and there you go.

Aura Ambrose thinks her life sucks. Her father left the family for another woman. Her mother, Grace, is a gifted artist and an art teacher but she is slowly losing her mind to schizophrenia. Due to her condition, there are times she couldn't differentiate between real life and imagination, and this reflected in her art. While Aura is trying hard to hold the family together, she has her own insecurities too, both in herself and her worries that one day she would be like her mother given the genes as well as her own gift in creativity. Because of these, she shun away from her interest as she thinks it would keep her sane. However, as Grace gets more out of control, Aura reaches a point where she began to feel suffocated by all the pressure.

Despite the subject, reading A Blue So Dark is like reading poetry as I find Holly Schindler's prose is simply beautiful and lyrical. She also captured Aura's emotions perfectly for I felt I could hear Aura's voice through her writing style, and I think this what makes the book stands out because of the believable, interesting characters. I wished I could describe my reading experience with A Blue So Dark as eloquently as Holly Schindler, but all I could think of are adjectives like 'powerful', 'compelling' and 'moving'.

This is a great debut by Holly Schindler about mother-daughter relationship and mental illness and I would definitely look forward to reading her books in the near future.

Holly Schindler's next release, Playing Hurt, will be out in March and I will be participating in her blog tour so look out for it!
9 Responses
  1. Ceri Says:

    Wow, I don't think I've ever read a story with a schizophrenic character either. I have a friend who suffers from schizophrenia so I'd be very interested to read this to see how Schindler portrays that illness.

  2. Sandy Nawrot Says:

    You are right, this is a topic not often covered. It sounds like an excellent read.

  3. Jeane Says:

    I'm curious about books that deal with mental illness; I have read a few about schizophrenia, but not one where the person was also an artist. And a mother! It sounds really good.

  4. Iliana Says:

    Melody this is totally reminding me of another YA book, Pieces of Me by Charlotte Gingras. Have you read it? It's really good.

    I'm definitely adding this one to my list. It sounds like it could be sad but a moving story!

  5. Violet Says:

    I don't think I can read books with schizophrenic characters. It scares me. The cover is gorgeous though.

  6. Melody Says:

    Hi everyone! This book has been an eye-opening experience to me, given that I'd not read anything on schizophrenia.

    Iliana - I remember your review on Pieces of Me by Charlotte Gingras; I just haven't got around to reading it though I've it on my to-read list. :)

  7. Ladytink_534 Says:

    This is the second time I've heard this described as being like reading poetry. I'm really curious about it!

  8. The Bookworm Says:

    Sounds fantastic Melody. I enjoy beautiful prose within the story. I'll have to keep an eye out for this one.
    Great review.

  9. Alice Says:

    I will keep this in mind when I'm in the mood to read YA again. Thanks for the review!

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