Freaking Out by Polly Wells
|August 14, 2013||Posted by Alison Jenkins under Health, Non-fiction, Young Adult|
Published by Annick Press
Reviewed by Alison Jenkins
I grew up feeling awkward and nervous in all but the most familiar situations. I tried to express it to parents, counselors and friends but there was little vocabulary to use and it was hard to find understanding. Polly Wells’ book would have been a huge help to me then. These are stories of courage and hope.
Her collection of frank and descriptive accounts honestly looks into teens’ struggles with anxiety disorders. Developed from interviews, all the stories are based on real people (of course, she’s changed the names for privacy). The accounts are factual and specific without being didactic and textbook. Told in the first person, each chapter reads like a conversation. Peter Mitchell’s illustrations are pretty great too.
Wells has provided an excellent resource for teens to use to explore their feelings – anyone with anxiety will relate to one, some, or all of the stories. While the details are sometimes difficult to hear, the language is easy to read. This would be an excellent book to share around a family with someone effected by anxiety. Wells has also included a large list of resources for further reading.
Anxiety and stress are unique to each person and everyone’s journey to help is different. Wells’ message is clear: you are not alone; there is help; things can and do get better.
To read more about Freaking Out by Polly Wells, click here.