When Reason Breaks
By: Cindy L Rodriguez
Available February 2015
A Goth girl with an attitude problem, Elizabeth Davis must learn to control her anger before it destroys her. Emily Delgado appears to be a smart, sweet girl, with a normal life, but as depression clutches at her, she struggles to feel normal. Both girls are in Ms. Diaz’s English class, where they connect to the words of Emily Dickinson. Both are hovering on the edge of an emotional precipice. One of them will attempt suicide. And with Dickinson’s poetry as their guide, both girls must conquer their personal demons to ever be happy.
In an emotionally taut novel with a richly diverse cast of characters, readers will relish in the poetry of Emily Dickinson and be completely swept up in the turmoil of two girls grappling with demons beyond their control.
This Blonde’s Review:
Emily and Elizabeth couldn’t be more different. The girls may go to the same school but they don’t have the same friends or interests. Elizabeth skips class and acts out. Emily is a good girl who follows all rules. But they both feel a connection to Emily Dickinson’s poetry.
We switch between both girls viewpoints without knowing who is struggling and who is going under. They have such different issues but we know that one of them will give up and attempt suicide. The girls are able to see things in each other that no one else can. They have enough distance from each other and can recognize the struggle that no one else can seem to see. They’re going through different things but they can recognize the pain in each other.
Seeing the different viewpoints was a great way to see that not everyone is what they seem. There is always more to the story. I had a hard time connecting with either of the girls in the story. I may have understood Elizabeth better of the two but I really felt the most for some of the secondary characters. Some of them, like Emily’s boyfriend, I really liked and would have wanted to know what they saw.
Overall I liked this but wasn’t blown away. If the description sounds good to you I think you should still give it a shot. It wasn’t right for me but it was a good book anyway, one where I wanted to find out what would happen and how it would impact everyone.