Sunday, December 30, 2007

Total Constant Order by Crissa-Jean Chappell

In Total Constant Order, Fin is a teenage girl who is obsessed with numbers and counting. It’s her way of trying to keep things under control. Soon after moving to Florida she finds out she’s got OCD and her doctor prescribes Paxil to help her. The story follows Fin through her daily life while she deals with her disorder, school, bullies, doctor visits, and Thayer (another teen who’s possibly as messed up as she is).

I really enjoyed this book. Sometimes the chapters seemed unconnected and a little erratic, but this fit nicely with the story and the storyline came through loud and clear. I loved some of the questions the therapist asked Fin. Sometimes, I stopped reading the book to ponder how I’d answer the question. It turned out to be somewhat enlightening. Each of the characters was interesting and believable. I didn’t quite understand the mother’s actions at times, but now that I finished the book I know why.

I sort of had an idea what OCD was about, but now I understand it a little better. It was interesting to follow the thoughts of a person who suffers from the disorder. Rather than outline the symptoms of OCD (which could be quite dry), the author concentrates on Fin’s experiences and feelings. I think it was very well done.

I was quite proud of myself when I figured out the numbers on the section headings. It wasn’t too difficult so it’s not much to be proud of, but at least I didn’t have to ask my husband (the math genius in our family) for help. sigh.

Overall, this book is a really good read. I’d recommend it to teenagers as well as adults.

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