Crazy

Crazy

4 (2,555 ratings on Goodreads)
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Description

Fifteen-year-old Jason has fallen upon bad times - his mother has died and his father has succumbed to mental illness. As he tries to hold his crazy father and their crumbling home together, Jason relies on a host of imaginary friends for guidance as he stumbles along trying not to draw attention to his father's deteriorating condition. Both heartbreaking and funny, "Crazy" lives up to the intense and compelling characters Han Nolan is praised for. As Jason himself teeters on the edge of insanity, Nolan uncovers the clever coping system he develops for himself and throws him a lifeline in the guise of friendship.show more

Product details

  • 12-17
  • Hardback | 352 pages
  • 137.16 x 210.82 x 35.56mm | 453.59g
  • Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company
  • Harcourt Children's Books
  • Boston, United States
  • English
  • 0152051090
  • 9780152051099
  • 1,380,297

Review quote

"Nolan leavens this haunting but hopeful story with spot-on humor and a well developed cast of characters, and she shows with moving clarity the emotional costs of mental illness, especially on teens forced to parent their own parents."--Booklist, starred review"In this distinct and effective blend of sorrow and humor, Jason, once invisible to his classmates and used to the chaos at home, suffers the effects of change when he's enrolled in a lunch-hour group therapy with other wayward teens and his father is taken away...he slowly learns, with the help of his new friends and foster parents, normalcy and how to care for himself first."--Kirkus Reviews, starred review "Nolan balances weighty subject matter with humor, offering an intelligent portrayal of a boy's slow release of burdens too heavy to carry alone."--Publishers Weeklyshow more

Our customer reviews

One word: Awesome! I wanted to read this book so much, and when I received it through NetGalley I was very excited. Jason is the protagonist. He spent his day at school, then comes back straight to his house, to take care of his mentally ill father. His mother is dead, and nobody has to know about his father, because they will take him, and Jason will be placed for adoption. So it doesn't matter to him that he has to take care of his father, sell almost every item in his house to get food and medicine, and that they live without heat. Then, one day, he starts failing in school. It's very silly, but he needs the attention. So he has to talk a few days a week with Ms Gomez and other kids with problems.... Jason is amazing, one of my favorite male characters of all time. He's just like any 15 years old boy, but he has so much responsibilities. He loves his parents, and his mind is awesome. He doesn't have friends, except the ones that live in his head and talk only to him. But that doesn't mean he is crazy, right? Right? Desperation, love, fear, anger. Jason has to deal with this everyday, but when he finally made some real friends, in a way, it becomes easier. Wow, I loved this book. Couldn't stop reading it!. This is a very powerful book, and I cried a lot while reading it because it's exactly as real life is: very unfair. Very intense, but also funny, between a bunch of imaginary friends, real teenagers friends, and a crazy person, you can imagine! Excellent writing. It grabbed me from the first line. It's not usual to start a book with the protagonist inviting you to his life, like a talk show. Very original. Really, you must read this book. I recommend it to everyone! Teenagers and adults. Believe me, you will like it, and you will learn a few things.show more
by Maria Guajardo (GABY)
Memories from before his mother died and before his father went crazy are the only things keeping Jason going, but his grasp on reality may be slipping. A cast of characters inhabit his mind; their voices constantly whisper commentary on his every thought and action. Jason's life is a complicated mess. He's trying to keep up his grades, write for the advice column of the school newspaper, and keep an eye on his father. It had always been his mother's responsibility to keep track of his father's erratic behavior, but she's gone. Now, Jason is in charge of damage control when his father dons his Greek war helmet as he rants and raves against the Furies who he believes killed his wife and are out to destroy him. The stress of juggling both his own life and his father's has Jason talking to the voices in his own mind. Giving him advice, criticism, and sometimes comfort are characters named Crazy Glue, Fat Bald Guy with a Mustache, Aunt Bee, Sexy Lady, and Laugh Track. They are his only "friends" - until he joins a therapy group at school and finds he does have other people who are there to provide support and encouragement. It is not easy for Jason to open up to strangers, but when his fellow group members pitch in to help when it is revealed that his father has stolen a multi-million dollar violin, Jason learns the true value of friendship. When things get so bad that his only recourse is to admit his father needs medical help, his new friends continue to cheer him on. CRAZY is the story of a young teen's struggle to keep together what's left of his family. Author Han Nolan uses the unique voices in Jason's head to vividly portray the emotional torment he experiences as he watches his own father crumbling before him. Readers will come to know and love Jason and admire his courage and determination to hold it all together under unbearable cir****tances.show more
by TeensReadToo
Crazy is just what the titles leads you to believe it will be, absolutely crazy! Jason's mother dies, and he is left to care for his mentally ill father all on this own. He's keeping it to himself because he refuses to let his father be locked up. To keep it a secret, Jason's learned not to have any friends, so to keep himself company, he's invited an amusing cast of characters in his own head. There is "Fat Bald Guy With Mustache" who is funny and series, "Aunt Bea" (from Andy Griffith) who is the sweet grandmotherly type of influence, "Sexy Lady" who spends most of the book reassuring Jason how hot he is, and Crazy Glue who is the teenager who tends to push Jason to do things he doesn't want to. This book was a lot of fun, and although it had the heavy topic of a father with a mental disorder, and a teen who ends up in foster care, it still moved along at a quick pace and never really felt to heavy or emotionally draining. The words really flowed through this story and I would find myself sitting down to read for just a few minutes and having to make myself put it down after a full hour has past. Jason is a great lead character, strong, independent, and yet still has to learn that sometimes you can't take care of everything all on your own. The "group" of real kids that Jason meets in therapy were a great cast and so much fun. They were a ragtag crew that I would have liked to hang out with when I was in school. It was very easy to relate with one or all of the characters in this book. Even if you didn't/don't have to deal with the same issues they do, the point is, we all have something going on in our lives that we sometimes need help getting through. Overall, this was a fast and very enjoyable read and I will be looking for more books by Han Nolan in the future.show more
by Reading Angel
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