Cracked by K.M. Walton
Sometimes there's no easy way out.
Victor hates his life. He has no friends, gets beaten up at school, and his parents are always criticizing him. Tired of feeling miserable, Victor takes a bottle of his mother's sleeping pills—only to wake up in the hospital.
Bull is angry, and takes all of his rage out on Victor. That makes him feel better, at least a little. But it doesn't stop Bull's grandfather from getting drunk and hitting him. So Bull tries to defend himself with a loaded gun.
When Victor and Bull end up as roommates in the same psych ward, there's no way to escape each other or their problems. Which means things are going to get worse—much worse—before they get better…
Publishes in US: January 3rd 2012 by Simon Pulse
Genre: YA contemp
Buy it: Amazon IndieBound Book Depository
Author stalk away: Website Goodreads
Simon & Schuster author page: http://authors.simonandschuster.com/K-M-Walton/81347146
My mini review--I hope that once I am done recovering from Disney and the resulting cold, I hope to more thoroughly review this one.
I love how gritty and real Walton writes. The characters are so realistic, flawed and in this case, has serious problems.
The bullying is so hard to swallow. I hate it, and I have been on the side of getting picked on, but luckily for me, never severely. I think that especially with boys, it is true to life and could really have happened in a school setting. It is sad to have to live in that fear and the object of hatred and you can tell how that coupled with distant parents who are requiring perfection, and he hopes if he reaches it, they will finally show him affection, leads him to want to end his life.
In Cracked, we also get the perspective of the bullyer, although we never really see what is going through his mind when he was being his cruelest, we do see his messed up home life, and see that it is a cycle. Feeling out of control at home, he finds an easy target and has control over something, much like a girl with an eating disorder. There is so much more to his character though, and some surprising twists. I def felt for him, but it was hard to get past what he did to Victor.
A good portion of the book is in the mental hospital, and I think that also gives a look into the world of mental illness that is slowly being broached in the world of YA. I don't know how realistic it is, since I have only been in individual therapy, but I did tear through the pages at their realizations, unexpected friendship, healing and ultimately having the unexpected people to stand up on their side.
The ending was fitting, and left me satisfied while still sad to leave my character.
I loved getting the dual perspective from two guys, with no romantic connection between the two.
My question to you, my lovely readers:
Have you ever been bullied?