I was nervous to read this book for two reasons, 1) I wasn’t sure about books in which the character try to fix the others, it doesn’t usually go well and 2) I was wary of love triangle. Highly Illogical Behaviour turned out to be a surprisingly light and funny book that deals with tough subject ♥
This book is about Solomon Reed, a sweet, funny, and likable nerd who suffers from agoraphobia and hasn’t left the house since his public breakdown three years ago. First thing first, this a very realistic portrayal of anxiety disorder itself. The symptoms are also accurate and I am pleased to see how Whaley described the panic attack and its varying causes. I am also pleased to see the fact that Sol is aware of his condition and knows what to do when things go out of hand. He doesn’t want to be cured because he’s accepted his limitation, not because he’s delusional and thinks he doesn’t need help.
Enter Lisa Praytor, a senior who tries to “fix” Sol as her ticket to get into this second best psychology program in the country. I have to admit, Lisa was sort of a jerk. You don’t fix someone with mental illness, especially when you’re just a high school student. I mean, I know it’s part of the story and everyone acknowledged the fact that she was being a jerk, including herself. But still. She only ever took one psychology class and want to fix someone? I have a bachelor’s degree in psychology and 4-years worth of psychological knowledge and I’m still not qualified to even make a diagnosis. This makes me mad (!!!)
However, it was heartwarming to see Lisa developed a genuine friendship with Sol. And despite of other things I dislike about her, I admire her ambition, bravery, and honesty. I am also pleased with her character development. She went from a self-centered, over-confident person to someone who could admit her mistake and able to see things differently 🙂
There’s also Lisa’s boyfriend, Clark, whom I thought would be a typical jock but turned out to be a really sweet and geeky guy ♥ He’s like the nicest guy ever, the boy next door! He loves a lot of nerd stuffs and instantly became friends with Sol in which he actually cares about him to the point that Lisa suspected he was gay and had a thing for Sol.
This book puts an emphasis on friendship and I really admire it. What started as a means-to-an-end transformed to be a genuine and easy friendship that benefits all of them. Clark found a friend in which he could truly be himself, Lisa started seeing things differently, and Sol found the thing he thought he would never need anymore. Their jokes + banter + all the nerd stuffs = WON MY HEART! ♥
Another thing I loved most from this book is Sol’s family. Solomon’s parents and grandma are possibly one of the most supportive family I’ve ever encountered in YA. They know Sol has issues and they do want him to get better, to get out of the house and have a normal life, but they also know how to accept things and support him either way. That’s so realistic! Also, Sol’s grandma rocks. I’m not sure if that’s even realistic, I mean, I know some people with really cool parents, but cool grandma? Never heard of it. But if it’s real, I’d love to get one for myself 😛
The writing was easy to read and the pace was pretty fast. A little too fast, in my opinion, because I wasn’t expecting Sol to get along with Lisa so quickly. For someone who hadn’t talked to anyone but his family in 3 years, Sol was very fast to befriend Lisa. I expected it to be awkward and difficult. There are also a couple things unresolved at the end, which is okay because I’ve come to appreciate realistic open ending ♣
ALL IN ALL, Highly Illogical Behavior successfully pleased me by dealing with tough issues in a light way. It’s fun, it’s fast, and it’s also emotional ♥ Despite its summary, Whaley showed us that mental illness doesn’t always need to be cured and sometimes the best way to deal with it is just to let it be 🙂
Have you read Highly Illogical Behaviour? What do you think about it? 😀 ANYWAY, I’ve been binge-ing a lot of books dealing with mental illness and I need more recommendations! ♦♦♦
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