Genres: New Adult, Teenager
Format: Hard Cover, Kindle
Sixteen-year-old Theresa is an overachiever. She wants to get accepted into an Ivy League college and to be the outstanding editor of her high school newspaper. During summer vacation, she is caught up in the enchantment of a summer romance. Her dreams of a happy future are shattered when the girl suffers a devastating depression. Through the support of her family and friends, Theresa must learn how to recover during her teenage years through young adulthood. It is a compassionate depiction of one young woman’s courageous attempt to overcome a mental illness.
As a bright young high school student, Theresa is determined to get good grades, become editor-in-chief of the newspaper and get the leading role in the school’s play. All while trying to win her crush’s heart and keep her parents at bay and off her back about the stress of the heavy workload she has taken on. As time moves on and deadlines become closer, Theresa starts to feel the pressure of all her important and demanding obligations and she can hardly keep up. She realizes that her love interest, Mike, who at a moment in time, seemed to be just as keen on her as she was on him is no longer available. When Mike becomes romantically involved with the prettiest girl in school, it is then Theresa understands she will never compare that she is pushed off into the deep end. A dark place of numbness sets in that suddenly consumes her every waking move, the only thing to do, is to sleep through it.
After a suicidal scare, Theresa’s concerned parents decide that medical treatment and going to live temporarily in a good institution will be best for her. After all, depression runs in the family genes. Theresa reflects back when she was a little girl and her loving and melancholy mother left her and her father to get help for her own desolation and distress. It also explores her boyfriend’s teenage alcoholism and Theresa’s codependent relationship with him, and also a positive romantic relationship with a different young man in college.
Promises to Theresa by Marianne Komek is a story of living and coping with the continuous battle of mental illness. She is a young girl whose hopes and fears are derailed by an inability to perform even the easiest of daily life tasks.
It is a great eye opener to a very misunderstood condition that is all too often shushed and swept under the rug. Informative and enlightening, I enjoyed getting a first-hand look into the saddened and dark mind of a girl that had so much going for her, hoping she will make it through to the light at the end of the tunnel.
Well written and emotionally charged, I give Promises to Theresa two thumbs up for a touching and tender story about one’s tough journey of the mind and courageously making it through to the other positive, hope-filled side of achieving normalcy. Very relatable for anyone who has suffered with mental illness or those who would like to understand it better. It shows the impact and significance it can have on a person’s life. An excellent and poignant read that impressed me the entire way.
The characters in Promises to Theresa are extremely real and well developed with relatable personalities, flaws and strengths. I fully connected with them. The story flows with ease and is written with finesse and skill. I highly recommend Promises to Theresa by Marianne Komek.
Reviewed by Beatrix Bloom for Chick Lit Cafe
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