Good YA novels have complex characters and this one delivers just that. A teenage boy coping with severe OCD is a serious story, but it is also a book filled with laughter. The novel explores how a parent’s mental illness can influence a teen. It also shows the camaraderie between the teens in group therapy.
The little brother didn’t seem realistic for his age, and I didn’t think there was enough conflict for a realistic group of mentally ill teens. However, despite these inconsistencies I do think Toten expressed the anxiety of mental illness pretty well. The fear of letting fear take over life, the embarrassment of uncontrollable quirks that could impact relationships were well written.
For a novel with heavy subject matter it was light and accessible. The voice was convincingly one of a young man. I think eccentric teens will enjoy it the most.