Sunday, April 27, 2008

Book: The Burn Journals

This weekend I completed the book "The Burn Journals" by Brent Runyon.

It is the true story of a 14 year old boy who trys to commit suicide by setting himself on fire and then his journey back to "normal" entry to high school.

The style is quick and easy to read but the topic can be difficult to get through. Basically it is Brent's internal dialogue through the year after attempting to set himself on fire. It was definitely an interesting read, but it had been reviewed in Publishers weekly as "intense, insightful, celebrating life and expressing hope." (Sept.) " Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information, Inc.)
I don't know if I was reading something different than the reviewers were, but I didn't find it at all to be celebrating life. I found it to be depressing, and thought it showed gaping holes in the medical profession and in the rehabilitation of youth who are suicidal. It was a realistic portrayal of the frustration and the "hollowness" I think many people experience when dealing with the mental health field.
Having said that, it was an interesting read, not really motivational if that's what you are looking for, but something worth picking up if you are interested in passing the time.

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