When going into The Gatekeepers, I didn’t know what to expect. I’ve read Jen Lancaster before, and her books are light-hearted and fun. They don’t deal with real-life issues such as teenage suicide. What I loved so much about the story was that it was bringing to light the effects of mental health. Most people don’t like talking about mental health, but it’s there, and it won’t ever go away. We follow four different characters, Stephen, Mallory, Kent, Owen, and Simone. The story touches on how the town is perfect. Not only are the parents rich and successful, they expect their children to be just as perfect. I don’t fault any parent wanting their child to do their absolute best in order to have a great life. But when you’re so hard on them that they feel the only way out is through death, then we have a problem. When a child doesn’t feel like he is good enough in academics, sports, etc., then something has to change. The main characters are all real, with issues that we all can relate to. I think Lancaster did a fine job of bringing a dark issue to us with such class and brevity. It also brings the message that you aren’t alone and you matter. I can’t tell you how good that message makes me feel. There are times when I feel like life is too much; but then I pick up a book, and all is right in there.
|Page Count||464 pages|
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