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The Hiding Spot

I focus primarily on Young Adult, Middle Grade, and Children's books, but my tastes are eclectic, so I change things up frequently!

A Blue So Dark

A Blue So Dark - Holly Schindler I was first drawn to a A BLUE SO DARK by the amazing cover art; the color of the water and the positioning and detail of the title are perfect. I never could've imagined just how much I'd enjoy Holly Schindler's YA debut!I've always had a preoccupation with abnormal psychology and two people I am very close to are artists, so I found the connection between schizophrenia and artistic temperments interesting. Though there are exceptions, I find that many artists honestly can be described as having an "artist's temperment;" I feel like those who are truly creative must share some common personality traits. Because of this, I could draw similarities between artists I know and Aura and her mother, allowing me to feel that much closer to the characters. The schizophrenia was an interesting element. Aura's fear that her creativity would overtake her and somehow cause her to become sick like her mother was almost tangible. On the outside looking in, it might be hard to understand Aura's logic and actions, but I felt like Schindler's writing enables the reader to transport themselves into Aura's world, into Aura herself, to truly understand her anxiety.Aura's parents are divorced; her father is remarried to a much younger, must more "normal" woman and he is in the process of starting a new, shiny family. Even now, having finished the novel, I still feel angry when I think about Aura's father. I can understand and justify his leaving Aura's mother if he no longer loves her or can find happiness with her, but he has no right to leave Aura. You do not get to divorce your children. Ever. Most of the time, in YA literature, the child and parent work through their issues by the end of the novel, but this isn't the case with A BLUE SO DARK, and I can honestly say that I'm happy about that. I didn't feel like Aura's father deserved forgiveness.Though there are many heavy aspects of this novel, there were lighter, brighter parts as well, like Aura's crush on a cute skater boy. This was a huge part of the novel, as expected, her mother's illness occupied much of Aura's time and energy, but I was greatful for the romantic reprieves.