“Look, fearless people are stupid, ‘cause they don’t even understand what fear is. You gotta be scared right down to your bones for bravery to mean anything.”
“Everything you want is on the other side of fear.”
The Solar family is one of the most extraordinary families you’ll ever meet. A curse seems to run in their veins and each and every member was supposed to be afflicted with one great fear that will deliver the Reaper at their doorstep to ultimately claim their lives at a certain time and it’s up to Esther to find Death (whose figurative and literal representation in the story was so excellently portrayed, I really loved it) by facing her long Semi-Definitive List of Worst Nightmares head on with the solid support of Jonah, a certified pickpocket, magician, artist and a generally effervescent and unpredictable teenage boy who has demons of his own.
The writing is whimsical and really funny, it was almost like reading fantasy or magical-realism. The characters although at some point seemed unbelievable were very well developed and I couldn’t help empathize with each of them. You could just relate with their every thought about life but especially about death, the point of living and the sacrifices of loving.
“She couldn’t stop herself from thinking that love was a pitcher plant. Sweet with nectar on the outside, but once you caught the scent and took the plunge, it ate you whole. Soul and all.”
This story is such an elaborate, complex, very original and at the same time really entertaining portrayal of different mental health issues as anxiety, depression, obsession, panic attacks and irrational fears. I almost couldn’t believe the vastness of the author’s accomplishments on the main issue in a single book alone and I would sincerely recommend everyone with or without a mental health issue (although I personally believe everyone kind of does) to read this book.
“Of course it’s not going to be easy. You’re fighting a war against yourself. Every time either side makes ground, you’re the one who gets hurt. But it’s now about winning the war against your demons. It’s about calling a truce and learning how to live with them peacefully. Promise me you’ll keep fighting.”