Reviewsday: The Pause by John Larkin

Everything changes in an instant.

9780857981707For fans of 'Looking For Alaska' and 'If I Stay', this new Australian young adult novel is guaranteed to inspire and enlighten.

Declan is heartbroken. His girlfriend has been whisked away from him like a princess at the start of a fairytale, and he has convinced himself that she no longer loves him. The dark cloud which has followed him since childhood now consumes him, and in his darkest moment he decides to escape it all by jumping in front of a train.

Or did he?

In a Sliding Doors-esque move (as a side note, this blogger just realised that the readers for this book might be too young to understand that reference. Go ask your mothers), the plot fractures, and we are invited to see what his life would have been had he hesitated and paused.

The author, John Larkin, has battled suicide and depression for years, and has written this novel in the hopes of shedding light on the realities of living with this mental illness. It is estimated that two hundred people in Australia attempt suicide every day. Around seven succeed. Often all that is needed is a pause.

Despite the weighty subject matter, this novel is heartwarming and inspirational. I sincerely hope it gets the attention and praise it deserves.

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