Top Ten Tuesday: Books Dealing with Tough Subjects

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme over at The Broke and the Bookish.  Today’s topic is



10. Go Ask Alice by Anonymous | This is the first book I’d ever read of its kind– the “diary” of a teenager caught up in the life of drugs.  It’s raw and ugly and incredible.  There is one particular drug-free scene of kitten-induced happiness that would always make me cry.

9. The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien | I’m not someone who would generally like “war books,” but this is an exception.  A must-read.

8. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath | This novel is the thinly-veiled autobiography of Sylvia Plath and her battle with depression.  It’s funny and scary and devastatingly well-written.

7. Ordinary People by Judith Guest | Guest’s brilliant novel features suicidal Conrad and his family that is falling apart.

6. Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell | This new book shows the ugliness of abuse and the sweetness of first love.

5. Kissing Doorknobs by Terry Spencer Hesser | Here’s a book that matters to me on a personal level as it shows Tara’s struggle with OCD.  Reading this book was like reading my autobiography.  I recommend it to everyone touched by obsessive-compulsive disorder.  In fact, while this book is meant for younger readers, my novel Lights All Around was intended to serve the same purpose but for an older audience.

4. Saving Francesca by Melina Marchetta | Of course, I swoon over all things Marchetta.  SF gives the reader a front row seat for observing depression.

3. The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson | Although Lenny’s sister has already died before the start of this story, this book shows how Lenny picks through the scraps of her shredded heart in the aftermath of Bailey’s death.

2. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green | I don’t care if it’s cliche to list this book!  I am in love with the way John Green is able to weave humor and beauty through the story of a girl dying of terminal cancer.

1. Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta | This book has everything: drug abuse, death, abandonment.  And yet it’s full of hope and light and the power of friendship.




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