Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Hopkins, Ellen. Impulse

Hopkins, Ellen. Impulse. Simon & Schuster, 2007 [1-4169-7487-3 // 978-1-4169-7487-1]
The is the story of three teenagers who meet at Aspen Springs mental hospital in Nevada. They have been involved in self-mutilation, sexual abuse, murder, and drug abuse. This 688 page book seals with some very harsh realities and is not meant for elementary or lower middle school students. There is frank talk about all the topics listed above as the teens go through treatment for their various problems. The book is written in a kind of free verse and is told by the three teenagers at various times. Periodically it took me a while to figure out who was speaking. Since the book deals with treatment in a mental hospital, it could be compared to "Cut" or even "I never promised you a rose garden." The reader gets totally wrapped up in the lives these three teenagers. It reads well up through the very dramatic ending. Once again, this is a very harsh book. I would read it before you put it in your library. There are several other books which follow it or are related to it which I understand are more harsh than this one. I will not be getting those. I can not keep this book on the shelf and I see many kids walking around with their own copies of this and the other related books.


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