Friday, August 18, 2017

Underwater by Marisa Reichardt

Underwater is a powerful, moving story about forgiveness and moving on. On October 15th, Morgan did a nice thing, and helped someone out. Unknowingly, the kind gesture made her indirectly responsible for a horrible, tragic shooting at her school. Logic tells her that she is not responsible for another person's actions, but her heart doesn't say the same. Now she is sick with guilt and panic attacks caused by PTSD and refuses to move outside her apartment. She also has to deal with scars from her father and divorce. Then one day, she gets new neighbors. She meets a boy named Evan, and with his help, she starts to realize that in order to come out of the water, and step outside, she has to forgive herself.

The author takes us into what happens after tragedy, and its lifelong impact. It opens a door for people to see what having a mental illness is like, and this book could help people become more understanding of someone's pain. Underwater also shows how emotional scars are often much more painful than physical ones. The tone of this book shifts a lot from so sad I want to cry to extreme happiness and humor! Basically, living life to the fullest is the message in this story, and it was well said.

This book also gives really good advice and coping strategies for people with panic attacks and anxiety. Morgan has posted on the walls of her apartment things to say to herself: 1. Breathe 2. You are okay. 3. You’re not dying. Regardless of any circumstance, that is really good advice, especially thought number 3. (Here's a life lesson from Underwater: Never tell somebody at a school that you are dying unless you actually are!)

The romance was outstanding, and I loved it. They had some rocky times like any relationship, and it was cool to see them progress, especially with Morgan thinking that she is a burden to him. Evan can be really sweet or really mean, and I personally thought that it made him more lifelike.

I highly recommend this book, especially for anyone suffering from trauma or mental illness.

Title: Underwater
Author: Marisa Reichardt
Publisher: Farrar, Straus, & Giroux
Pages: 288
Series: No
Rating: 5 Stars

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