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Imagine Us Happy by Jennifer Yu
Published: October 23, 2018
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Genres: young adult, mental health, contemporary fiction, contemporary romance
Rating: 4.5 stars
Recommend to fans of: realistic young adult novels, books about mental health, great friendships
Foodie Vibes: pizza
Stella lives with depression, and her goals for junior year are pretty much limited to surviving her classes, staying out of her parents’ constant fights and staving off unwanted feelings enough to hang out with her friends Lin and Katie.
Until Kevin. A quiet, wry senior who understands Stella and the lows she’s going through like no one else. With him, she feels less lonely, listened to—and hopeful for the first time since ever…
But to keep that feeling, Stella lets her grades go and her friendships slide. And soon she sees just how deep Kevin’s own scars go. Now little arguments are shattering. Major fights are catastrophic. And trying to hold it all together is exhausting Stella past the breaking point. With her life spinning out of control, she’s got to figure out what she truly needs, what’s worth saving—and what to let go.
Thank you to NetGalley, Harlequin Teen and Jennifer You for an ARC ebook copy to review. As always, an honest review from me.
Imagine Us Happy tells the story of two teens who are navigating life, high school, relationships and family life while dealing with depression. Stella and Kevin meet at the beginning of the school year. They end up dating for the whole year. We know its not going to end well, and the book is the story of their lives the past year.
I like that the author portrays depression and therapy in a realistic manner. That it’s a process, not a magical cure that will fix everything in a few sessions. Stella is doing better because of therapy but she has to keep working on herself. It’s not easy. The book portrays the challenges of dating or any extra stress when you’re dealing with mental health issues. No that it can’t be done, but both people have to be taking care of themselves in healthy ways.
A super realistic look at depression, dating and friendships. I think this is going to be a very popular young adult book for years to come!
If you could give advice to characters/people dating with mental health issues, what would you say?