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Fig
by Sarah Elizabeth Schantz


Overview - Love and sacrifice intertwine in this brilliant and provocative debut of rare beauty about a girl dealing with her mother’s schizophrenia and her own mental illness.

Fig’s world lies somewhere between reality and fantasy.

But as she watches Mama slowly come undone, it becomes hard to tell what is real and what is not, what is fun and what is frightening.
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More About Fig by Sarah Elizabeth Schantz
 
 
 
Overview
Love and sacrifice intertwine in this brilliant and provocative debut of rare beauty about a girl dealing with her mother’s schizophrenia and her own mental illness.

Fig’s world lies somewhere between reality and fantasy.

But as she watches Mama slowly come undone, it becomes hard to tell what is real and what is not, what is fun and what is frightening. To save Mama, Fig begins a fierce battle to bring her back. She knows that her daily sacrifices, like not touching metal one day or avoiding water the next, are the only way to cure Mama.

The problem is that in the process of a daily sacrifice, Fig begins to lose herself as well, increasingly isolating herself from her classmates and engaging in self-destructive behavior that only further sets her apart.

Spanning the course of Fig’s childhood from age six to nineteen, this deeply provocative novel is more than a portrait of a mother, a daughter, and the struggle that comes with all-consuming love. It is an acutely honest and often painful portrayal of life with mental illness and the lengths to which a young woman must go to handle the ordeals—real or imaginary—thrown her way.

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9781481423588
  • ISBN-10: 1481423584
  • Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
  • Publish Date: April 2015
  • Page Count: 352
  • Reading Level: Ages 14-UP
  • Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.8 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.9 pounds


Related Categories

Books > Juvenile Fiction > Social Themes - Depression & Mental Illness
Books > Juvenile Fiction > Family - Parents
Books > Juvenile Fiction > Social Themes - Adolescence

 
Publishers Weekly Reviews

Publishers Weekly® Reviews

  • Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
  • Review Date: 2015-03-02
  • Reviewer: Staff

In a novel rich with metaphors, newcomer Schantz explores the tender, heartwrenching relationship between a schizophrenic mother and her highly gifted daughter. The book, which spans 15 years, begins when Fiona (aka Fig), then age six, first witnesses her mother’s delusional behavior. During her mother’s subsequent decline and long stays in hospitals and institutions, Fig practices various rituals and self-destructive acts, believing her sacrifices will restore her mother’s sanity. Meanwhile Fig’s patient, hardworking father tries to maintain a sense of normalcy but is plagued by worries. He relies heavily on his mother, who wants to turn Fig into a proper young lady, and his brother, who understands Fig in ways no one else can, to help with Fig’s upbringing while he farms the land. The beautiful and remote rural setting underscores Fig’s isolation among classmates who view her family as strange and her joy during fleeting moments when her mother appears to be cured. Readers will get a strong sense of the powerful bond of love between parents and child as Fig’s family strives to navigate the quagmire of mental illness. Ages 14–up. Agent: Heather Schroder, Compass Talent. (Apr.)

 
BAM Customer Reviews