The Pause - John Larkin

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The Pause - John Larkin

Released: April 1, 2015
The PausePublisher: Penguin Random House AUS
SynopsisDeclan seems to have it all: a family that loves him, friends he’s known for years, a beautiful girlfriend he would go to the ends of the earth for. 

But there’s something in Declan’s past that just won’t go away, that pokes and scratches at his thoughts when he’s at his most vulnerable. Declan feels as if nothing will take away that pain that he has buried deep inside for so long. So he makes the only decision he thinks he has left: the decision to end it all.

Or does he? As the train approaches and Declan teeters at the edge of the platform, two versions of his life are revealed. In one, Declan watches as his body is destroyed and the lives of those who loved him unravel. In the other, Declan pauses before he jumps. And this makes all the difference.

One moment. One pause. One whole new life.

From author of The Shadow Girl, winner of the Victorian Premier's Literary Awards 2012 Prize for Writing for Young Adults, comes a breathtaking new novel that will make you reconsider the road you’re travelling and the tracks you’re leaving behind.
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What I Thought: I have to start by saying that synopsis is quite misleading. That's what drew me into this story, the synopsis. Two versions of his life are revealed - in one, Declan watches his body destroyed and the lives of those who loved him unravel. This is the part that misled me because we do not see the lives of those who loved him unravel. I assumed this book would be very 'Sliding Doors'-esque, with two simultaneous realities of after he jumped and after he paused. It isn't like that. It is how his life would have gone had he paused. Perhaps if I'd gone in knowing that, I might have enjoyed it much more.

Now I've got my rant out of the way with, I can say this book was quite enjoyable. It gives a deep and meaningful look into anxiety and depression, and the way it can fester and creep up on a person without them even realising it. Declan had a good life, despite something that had happened in his past that was locked away and festered, and one seemingly little thing that blew everything up and causes Declan to decide to throw himself in front of a train.

We see how Declan deals with his future after he pauses, the help he gets after he admits he needs it. How he realises it all could have been avoided if he had thought to ask for help. This book is perfect to give to young people who may be hiding their own problems, for people who don't know the extent of what some people with depression go through, and just generally anyone else who likes a good read. John Larkin is a wonderful writer and I can't wait to see what else he puts on the shelves.

The Good: The raw eye-opening look into a teenage boys' journey with depression and attempted suicide.

The Bad: As mentioned, this was NOT at all what I expected it to be, and so when I came towards the end of the book and started to realise that we wouldn't see how his family dealt with his death, the appeal of the story was lost to me. Sorry, but it's true.

Rating: 3/5

Mad Claire

Claire Blennerhassett

Reader, Blogger

Twenty-something | book-blogger | tea-drinker | procrastinator | wannabe-writer | student


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