Title: Are We All Lemmings and Snowflakes
Author: Holly Bourne
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Mental Health
Publisher: Usborne Publishing
Release Date: August 9th, 2018
Welcome to Camp Reset, a summer camp with a difference. A place offering a shot at “normality” for Olive, a girl on the edge, and for the new friends she never expected to make – who each have their own reasons for being there. Luckily Olive has a plan to solve all their problems. But how do you fix the world when you can’t fix yourself?
Holly Bourne writes YA novels and blogs about feminist issues. Her favourite things to complain loudly about are: the stigma of mental health, women’s rights, and the under-appreciation of Keanu Reeves’ acting ability.
Holly’s first two books, Soulmates and The Manifesto on How to be Interesting, have been critically acclaimed and translated into six languages. The first book in the ‘Normal’ series, Am I Normal Yet?, has been chosen as a World Book Night book for 2016 and has inspired the formation of Spinster Clubs around the country.
Before becoming a full-time author, Holly was editor and relationship advisor for a charity website.
Website – http://hollybourneauthor.tumblr.com/
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/Holly.BourneYA
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/hollybourneya/
Twitter – https://twitter.com/holly_bourneYA
Goodreads author page – https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6561227.Holly_Bourne
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Tesairie’s Book Reads – Desyerie (Promo post)
August 9th (RELEASE DAY)
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Bibliophile Soprano – Fay (REVIEW)
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Amidst the Pages – Imogene (REVIEW)
The Reading Fangeek – Avy (Promo Post)
That Bookshelf Bitch – Shealea (REVIEW)
Wanderer in Neverland – Shaine (REVIEW)
The Royal Polar Bear Reads – Rafael (REVIEW)
Wander with Jon – Jon (REVIEW)
Diary of an Avid Reader – Areli (REVIEW)
Novel Thief – Joefel (Promo post)
Thank you Erika of The Noctunal Fey for letting me participate in the PH Blog Tour of Are We All Lemmings and Snowflakes. And thank you Usbourne for sending a review copies in exchange of an honest review. (Note: This does not affect my opinion of the book)
Are We All Lemmings and Snowflakes is a well-research, on point and overwhelming story that focuses on mental illness. It is brilliantly written that shows how someone with mental illness struggles, endure pain, and care for the world.
Olive who has a problem with noise, struggling, keep on blaming herself and believes that every mess around her is her fault. She decided to enter Camp Reset after she felt the need to start over and promised her parents that she will get better. Olive is a very aggressive girl, who doesn’t want a label, and (I think) she is very harsh to herself.
In Camp Reset, Olive met different kinds of people. There is Jamie, who plays guitar in a band. He is very friendly but has silver tongue. He always tells things at the right moment, and I like his personality. Lewis, who loves math and thinks that math can save the world is shy and one of Olive’s close friends at the camp. I’m jealous of his intelligence and at some point his bravery to voice out his true feelings. Further, Olive met Sophie, and Hannah whom she had problems with but gain their trust and friendship later. I like Sophie’s tenderness in the story. She has her own fight and shows audacity. Hannah, on the other hand, is kind of bitch to Olive but she’s willing to change and made some progress. And Gabriella who is very cheerful and hyperactive most the time. It’s like we all need Gabriella in our lives. We need someone who’s very jolly like her. I like how Olive influences these people to change, to do something beyond their expections.
The story is compelling and page turner. Some twists did not give me so much impact but the last part did (I knew from the start her diagnosis because I had a feeling about it and I guess it right!). It gives me a rollercoaster ride that when I thought Olive is feeling better and progressing, Holly Bourne dropped the bomb and BOOM! I’m in shock. The character development is okay, and I really adore most of them. Also, I’d like to commend how Olive’s parents are very supportive. I’m glad that her parents are very open to ideas of mental illness and did not even reject Olive or think that their daughter is mad but still continues to love her. And I don’t want to exclude Ally although her appearance is very short but she did not fail to portray a very supportive and nonjudgmental friend.
Are We All Lemmings and Snowflakes is very close to my heart because of two reasons. First, I’m a psychology major and I understand how someone wrestle with mental illness. I know that someone with mental illness like Olive could be very aggressive to the point that they could disrupt property or even their selves. Holly Bourne, I must say, did a great job. She really did research and study well about mental illness. And second, there are some moments that I could relate to Olive (her feelings and what she thinks).
There is one thing that I did not like in this because, it is I felt like it is in slow pace. That’s all but everything in this book is amazing.
Holly Bourne did not disappoint on writing and executing someone with mental illness and includes other concepts like algorithm and Olive’s theories, that made me think that it is not even impossible to the point of asking questions like “What if we have that technology, can it save the world?” Moreover, there are striking parts such as core self-beliefs, that I would really like to try to my self and share it with my students.
This book taught me so many things in life that I am seeing the world differently. “Kindness is contagious” and it really is. But before we become kind to others we need to be kind to ourselves friends. As Dr. Jones said, it is not being selfish but self-love. We should not forget to learn how to accept, forgive, be kind and be compassionate to ourselves and the “Kindness Virus” will be contagious.
“You’ve got to learn to COPE with the noise.”
“The universe is telling me that sometimes things are okay. Sometimes you can have a quiet mind and the sun on your face and the breeze in your hair and an affinity with the natural world and…”
“I bet you’re thinking you can’t…that they’re unchangeable. That you’re stuck with them. But you’ve got to remember, these beliefs aren’t true. They’re just stories you’re telling yourself. Over and over.”
“You see, the brain is not going to accept something it does not believe is true. If you keep telling yourself ‘I am brave’ when you believe the opposite, your brain will suss that out and press the reject button.”
“Well don’t beat yourself up. Just acknowledge the thought and then let it go. Acknowledge and let go.”
“When people don’t understand about feeling such potent sadness is, when it lifts, it really let’s you know what happiness means.”
“That human beings are both utterly predictable and yet utterly unpredictable.”
“We all like to think we’re special, but, actually, we’re all pretty stupid and do the same predictable things at the same predictable times.”
“Sometimes it’s comforting to know other people are going through the same thing.”
“Never do anything that requires you to say sorry. Because it’s too late then. Sorry isn’t a magical eraser. Sorry doesn’t get the stain out.”
“We don’t neatly divide into a world that demands order. And they keep trying to find out why, and what makes us the way we are, but they can’t.”
“You’ve got to understand a problem before you can solve it.”
“If people were kinder in general wouldn’t that help people who already have mental health problems, as well as prevent them?”
“Be kind. Be compassionate.”
“Think about how much easier it would be if people weren’t constantly judging you for the mistakes you’ve made, the people you kiss the moods you go through.. If they just tried to understand and be compassionate towards what was going on, rather than sneering or judging or being cold or mean or bitchy or…”
“We need to infect people with kindness. We need to make it contagious.”
“…kindness and compassion isn’t just about other people. It’s about yourself too. It’s about understanding your own pain, your own suffering.”
“Only I have the power to change my life, only I can take the harder steps to hopefully give myself easier life.”
“You don’t have to stop looking after yourself just to help the world. In fact, sometimes it’s better for the world if you put yourself first. That’s not being selfish, in fact looking after yourself is the greatest act of kindness you can give the world. Loving yourself first is the best way to spread love. You’ve tried so hard to be kind, you’ve not started with you, and maybe that’s where it’s gone wrong?”
“Being selfish sometimes can be the most selfless act there is. It gives you the strength to really help. Sometimes you need to put your self first and get fir and strong so you can go out and save the world when you’re in the best shape to.”
Amazon – https://amzn.to/2MmDMVY
iBooks – https://apple.co/2LXHRUs
It is also available in the National Bookstore, although they haven’t listed the title in their website.
Don’t forget to grab your own copy! 🙂
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