The Silver Linings Playbook: Matthew Quick

Admittedly, I have seen the movie many times before I ever read the book. If you haven’t read or seen The Silver Linings Playbook, it is about a man named Pat Peoples who is recently released from a mental health facility. His one goal is to get his wife, Nikki, back, so the whole novel is based on his mental journey of being back in his parents home surrounded by old and new friends while he tries to come in contact with Nikki.
Sometimes I really enjoy reading novels that feature serious topics such as depression, but other times I hate these same books because they can bring me back into my own depression if I mistake myself for the main character (this is normal, right?). Anyways, this novel was great and sent thousands of great messages about mental health and it seems like a more mature version of It’s Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini.

The Silver Linings Playbook is not a fast paced novel like I normally read. I find the changes that happen occur gradually and are broken up by the many football games Pat attends and watches on TV. It is kind of a bummer that I do not care for football because football is a feature in Pat’s relationship with his family and his therapist. Go Eagles? Sure, why not? Because I felt Pat’s journey was so gradual I didn’t get emotional reading this book until Tiffany (a clinically depressed friend of Pat’s) shared her story of her deceased husband and her behavior following (yeah, I cried).

The movie and the book are the same story, but I felt as though they were not overly similar. Some movies and books are word for word the exact same and I am not a real fan of that! Per usual, I prefer this book over it’s movie counterpart. I would say the book definitely has more overall perspective and it gives the reader more time to connect with the characters situation.

I do not know what to write as I do not want to technically analyze this book! All I want to say is that it is a beautiful book. It is a beautiful book that features mental illness in a way that allows readers who do not experience it themselves to be able to understand some of the things that go on in a persons mind. Some of my favorite parts of this book were when it came to light that shaming people because they are mentally ill is wrong.

Beautiful, better than the movie, and emphasizes important topics… if you have not already go read this book!


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