Book Review: Therapy by Kathryn Perez

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Title: Therapy
Author: Kathryn Perez
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Length: 294 pages
Rating: 5 stars

Synopsis
I’m needy.

I’m broken.

Cutting breaks through my numbness, but only opens more wounds.

Depression, self-harm, bullying….that’s my reality.

Sex and guys….that’s my escape.

The space between the truth and lies is blurred leaving me torn, lost and confused. And while the monsters that live in my head try to beat me– the two men that I love try to save me.

This is my story of friendship, heartache, and the grueling journey that is mental-illness.

Sometimes you have to get lost in order to be found.

Grace Review

This book is aptly named, as I may need therapy after reading it.  From the get-go, there is so much tension in this book, I felt it coming off the pages, rolling thru me.  I had to take several breaks, just to calm my heart rate and stretch my joints which were locked in place while reading.

Jessica’s story has angst on angst on angst.  What leads her to a state of depression in the first place is unclear, but these things only putting into a darker hole:

Bullying
Alcoholic mom
Distant father

Monsters don’t live under beds; in our minds is where they truly reside.

Her only source of relief from the pain these people cause, is to cut.  Then Jace comes into her life, and brings along some light to her darkness.  Does she still cut?  Yes, but it isn’t her only personal therapy anymore.

While Jace tries to help her, it is downright scary how Jessica is so self-destructive.  There is the smart path, and then there is the “blow shit up” Jessica way.  I’m not sure what was worse, the terrible decisions she made to hurt herself and those around her, or the fact that she knew what she was doing was wrong, and she did it anyway.

“I have no friends to speak of and it’s all because I let all of the bad things in my life determine my path.  Anytime something good comes my way I mess it up.”

Fuck it up, is more like it.  But potato, potatoe.

If you read the synopsis, then you may have already guessed that there is a love triangle in this book.  I don’t hate reading about love triangles per se, it always adds layer of angst to the story, but this one was really hard to stomach.  Why?  Because I liked both guys for different reasons.  I wavered back and forth on who I thought was best for Jessica.  Interestingly, I felt that the author guided Jessica’s decisions based on the actions of the character, or what happened to them.  It forced Jessica to look from one to the other.  And while I was indecisiveness on the guy, when Jessica finally made her decision, I was happy for her, and the guy.  It all seemed so right.  Until it was so very, very wrong.

This author broke my heart with what happens.  Hasn’t Jessica been thru enough?!  Fuuuuuuuuck!!!  I felt myself shaking my head while reading, mumbling “no, no, no, no, no” repeatedly, while tears streamed down my face.

Although the love triangle was hard to swallow, I absolutely loved that Jessica healed on her own.  The author took a realistic and honest approach here.  No guy can magically cure the level of depression and self-loathing that Jessica had within her.  And I hate when books make you think that this can actually happen.  While both Jace and Kingsley tried to help Jessica, and both played a role in setting her on that path, it was the therapy itself that helped her for the long-term.  It wasn’t quick, or easy.  And that made it all the more real.

This story is heartbreaking and deeply emotional.  The pain Jessica suffered and how she came out of the darkness that consumed her whole life, was inspiring.  If you can handle an emotional roller-coaster, this is absolutely the book to read.

– Grace

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