Crazy for Alice by Alex Dunn
Publication date: August 1st 2016
Donnie Darko meets Pleasantville in this dark urban fantasy about sixteen-year-old Ben Howard. When Ben accidentally kills his father and is sectioned after a failed suicide attempt, he escapes the guilt by seeking solace deep within the recesses of his own mind.
Waking in a strange ethereal black and white world, where most people exist as living statues, Ben leaps from New York skyscrapers into African jungles without fear of injury, severed from his emotions, until he meets and falls in love with Alice. But, no sooner does he settle into this strange, new existence, he’s traumatically catapulted back to the brutal reality he left behind.
Nobody believes he’s spent the last six months in a Gray World. Not his neurotic mother, his policeman brother Gavin, or his friends Mitch and Wendy, and certainly not Dr. McKenzie who’s threatening to give him even more pills. They all think he’s crazy, and why wouldn’t they when he’s been in some strange coma locked up in a mental asylum?
So this will actually be my first 5-star review for the year.
Special thanks to the author for the opportunity to read this awesome title.
The story centers around 17year old Ben, he is about to be sectioned due to a failed suicide attempt. His family cannot understand why he doesn’t want to live. Ben blames himself for his father’s death and so he falls into despair and depression escaping his guilt when he accidentally wakes up in a gray world where there is no color and of course no more pain. Initially, Ben is all alone until one day he meets Alice. Ben enjoys his time with Alice and for once he actually wants to live so he can be with her until he is pulled back to reality leaving Alice behind. Ben knows if he doesn’t find Alice she might die but there’s just one problem, no one believes a word he says.
What did I think? Wow! I absolutely enjoyed every page of this book. From start the finish the book held me captive that I just could not do anything else until I finished the book.
The book gives a view of depression as we go into the mind maze of Ben, the fact that he is repeatedly misunderstood and at some point feels betrayed by the people he trusts does nothing to help his situation. The mother was so blinded by the issues in the family that she only chose to believe what she wanted. This I found very annoying to point that I felt she smothered Ben so much and did nothing to help his situation.
I really liked Ben, its been a while I read about a good male lead in a book. His optimism and determination were just amazing. Sometimes we need to do that, just find our lifeline and hold on to it no matter what. A really awesome and a bit of an unforgettable read.