Between the Bliss and Me (Hardcover)
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Acclaimed author Lizzy Mason delivers a moving contemporary YA novel about mental illness, young romance, and the impact of family history on one teen’s future, perfect for fans of Jandy Nelson, Robin Benway, and Kathleen Glasgow.
When eighteen-year-old Sydney Holman announces that she has decided to attend NYU, her overprotective mom is devastated. Her decision means she will be living in the Big City instead of commuting to nearby Rutgers like her mom had hoped. It also means she’ll be close to off-limits but dreamy Grayson—a guitar prodigy who is going to Juilliard in the fall and very much isn’t single.
But while she dreams of her new life, Sydney discovers a world-changing truth about her father. She knew he left when she was little due to a drug addiction. But no one told her he had schizophrenia or that he was currently living on the streets of New York City.
She seizes the opportunity to get to know him, to understand who he is and learn what may lie in store for her if she, too, is diagnosed.
Even as she continues to fall for Grayson, Sydney is faced with a difficult decision: Stay close to home so her mom can watch over her, or follow her dreams despite the risks?
About the Author
Lizzy Mason grew up in northern Virginia before moving to New York City for college and a career in publishing. Now back in Virginia with her two cats, when not reading or writing, Lizzy loves to travel. She has visited forty-four states and eleven countries so far. She is also the author of The Art of Losing. Visit her online at www.LizzyMasonBooks.com.
Praise for Between the Bliss and Me
“Lizzy Mason has done it again. Between the Bliss and Me is an eye-opening look at the impact of mental illness on the mentally ill, their families, and society. Sydney's story is so compelling and real, I couldn't put this book down.”
—Brigid Kemmerer, New York Times bestselling author of A Curse So Dark and Lonely
“Get your heartstrings ready for this lovely novel.”
“Filled with compassion and hope, Between the Bliss and Me opens a window into the world of mental illness in an intimate, eye-opening, and thought-provoking way. Impossible to put down; readers will finish the last page knowing that love, acceptance, and self-care are the keys to living one’s best life.”
—Liza Wiemer, author of The Assignment
“Between the Bliss and Me is an exquisitely written and magnificently compelling piece of storytelling. Sydney is a refreshingly authentic lead who charges through the pages, riffling through her family's past to prepare for her own future. Truly, Mason's sophomore novel is a can't-miss book.”
—Rachel Strolle, Glenside Public Library
“Strongly appealing . . . Mental illness is handled with sensitivity.”
“A riveting read about dealing with mental illness.”
—School Library Journal
“Examines the paradoxes of schizophrenia and the challenges of an uncertain future . . . Will remind readers of Gilmore Girls.”
“Mason (The Art of Losing) provides a depiction of schizophrenia from a range of lenses, including personal, familial, legal, social, and medical. Some monologues communicating complex issues, such as the state of the U.S. mental health care system, may have better served as an author’s note, but Mason’s care in portraying the complexity of the mental disorder, as well as her exploration of genetic legacy and inherited emotional baggage, is laudable.”
“In turns sweet, funny, romantic, and heart wrenching, Between the Bliss and Me is a powerful and moving contemporary told with grace and truth.”
—Joy Preble, Brazos Bookstore (Houston, TX)
“Between the Bliss and Me will hit you right in the feels. Set during that unique time between high school and college, the book packs an emotional punch while exploring themes about family, first love, and mental health. It’s smart, realistic fiction with heart and humor.”
—Sara Gundell, Novel Novice
“Sydney has spent years navigating the complicated relationships in her life, which only becomes harder when she defies her mother's wishes about college and learns the truth about her absent father. The summer between high school and college becomes a turning point she could never have imagined, bringing all of her issues crashing together in a wave that threatens to destroy the person she's worked so hard to become. Between the Bliss and Me is a heartbreaking exploration of the legacy of family mental illness and how it touches everyone in reach, rendered sensitively and beautifully under Lizzy Mason's deft hands.”
—Melissa Posten, The Novel Neighbor (St. Louis, MO)