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Following her friend's suicide, Morgan questions the meaning of life and death to come to her life's ultimate decision.
If Morgan thought her life was tough before--what with a drug-addicted, klepto brother and a cradle-robbing mother--it just got worse: Her friend Jason took his own life.
Morgan copes--or tries to--by attempting to piece together vague clues that might explain Jason's suicide. Making matters worse, she can't help but feel responsible somehow. Sometimes she thinks maybe Jason had the right idea all along.
This fourth book in the teen fiction series TrueColors deals with the important topics of grief, suicide, self-worth, identity, and handling tragedy.
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A Book all Teenagers should read
Pitch Black……by Melody Carlson
Morgan lived in one of those dysfunctional families but she was glad to have Jason Harding as her best friend. Morgan and Jason had tried to date, but they decided their relationship was only friends. Since Jason’s life seemed almost perfect, she could talk to him about her family and tell him how fortunate he was to have such a good family life. That is until the day her world crashed in on her. She found out at school that Jason had taken his life. She didn’t believe it at first, but then as the day wore on and she talked to schoolmates, she realized it was really true. How would she ever survive without her very best friend? As this story unfolds, join Morgan and Jason’s family and friends as they try to understand why Jason would do something like this.
Teen Suicide is not a subject we like to read or talk about but it is real folks. And Melody Carlson has created a cast of characters telling a heartbreaking story that will stay with you for a long time. My heart ached for these teens as they tried to decide whether or not they would be better off copying what their friend Jason did. After all, if Jason didn’t want to live, being a Christian and living a seemingly good life, should they want to live when their lives, and their family lives were so dysfunctional?
This is a book every teen should have the opportunity to read. With the exceptional writing by the author making readers feel like we are living the story with these teens, maybe this book could save the life of someone thinking the same thoughts as Jason and these teens. I very highly recommend this book to teens and parents of teens to read and discuss with each other. Pitch Black should be in every library, everywhere!
I received this book free from NavPress to read and review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 55
7/27/2011 8:07:49 AM
Engaging, shocking, yet eye opening!
Pitch Black is the fourth book in the teen fiction series TrueColors, which deals with the important topics of grief, suicide, self-worth, identity, and handling tragedy. Melody Carlson does a great job in my opinion of writing about such hush hush topics in many households and communities. Pitch Black puts a reader right into a group of teenagers as they make their way through different emotions that have been evoked by the suicide of one of their friends.
Morgan Bergstrom is your average teenager, with a not so average family. You walk with her through this book as she first feels like her life is a disaster, with her drug addicted brother who likes to steal, and her mother who has fallen for someone half her age. She believes life just can't get any worse, until her best friend commits suicide, and her small circle of friends decide, in turn, to make a suicide pact that soon grows to a large number of kids. I cried when the Pastor who spoke at Jason's funeral revealed a secret about Jason's suicide toward the end of the book that put a twist on everything.
I think any parent with children, especially teenagers should read this book, even though it's targeted towards teens. It's a little scary, but very eye opening. This book shows that it doesn't have to be someone from a terrible home life, with awful parents, that commits suicide. Jason, Morgans friend, came from a great family, was involved in youth groups for church, and seemingly had a life that other kids in the book envied. It was a shock to everyone. I think it's a great point that needed to be made. Suicide is a touchy subject that leaves many confused, and it's a subject that's uncomfortable and in some cases taboo to even speak about. Melody Carlson does an amazing job getting in there and breaching the conversations, the different emotions, the reactions, and thinking of a group of friends after Jason kills himself.
Another important part of this book is an article about Acetaminophen Overdose and it shares some statistics on teen suicide as well as what Tylenol can do to your body, and why it's so harmful and fatal when taken in large doses as the young boy in this story did.
I gave this book 4 stars as it was interesting, engaging, eye opening to say the least, and as always, if a book can draw me in, give me a lump in my throat, and make me feel like I'm in the mind of the characters, it's an A+ read.
7/19/2011 10:50:05 PM
"Pitch Black" revolves around Morgan Bergstrom. She is a seventeen year old girl who feels like her life is sorta out of control. Her brother uses drugs, her parents are divorced and since her mom started dating a new guy Morgan feels like her mom really doesn't pay any attention to her anymore. When she learns that her friend Jason Harding committed suicide, she blames herself, but soon starts thinking that maybe Jason had the right idea, and decides to join in a suicide pact with two other students. Do they go thru with it? Read the book and find out!
Ms. Carlson tackles the subject of suicide. She tells the story in such a way that you feel like you are actually seeing the story thru the eyes of a teen. While this could have been a depressing story it really wasn't instead it shows us the choices we can make, with an inspirational message woven in. While it is the fourth book in the True Colors series it can easily be read as a stand alone work.This is a good clean read perfect for young adults.
7/7/2011 8:53:07 PM
When I was 15 I was a huge fan of Melody Carlson's Diary of a Teenage Girl series. For some reason these books spoke to an angsty teen girl's troubles, and possibly gave me an unrealistic view of the future. I didn't read too many of her other books outside that series, so I decided to try out a book from her True Color series.
Pitch Black follows Morgan, as she deals with suicide of her friend, Jason. Jason's death causes Morgan, and her friends to evaluate their own bleak lives to point where they think suicide might be an option too. Morgan has other people who encourage her to observe where her faith has gone, and how it could be thing that gives her the feel of life again.
This book seems to be very relevant by many things we hear happening in the media today. It has the tendency to clean everything up almost too quickly, but there isn't much room in the book to further explore the consequences suicide can leave behind. There is a great discussion guide included, which would probably be very helpful in discussing opinions on suicide with teens. This book should encourage the Christian community to come together more to discuss suicide, and how it is affecting people today.
I think this book would be relatable to teens, or people who have experienced something similiar. If you're someone who just needs a little encouragment in your Christian walk, it is inspiring to see how God is conveyed in this book. The book has researched a variety of ways that people at risk for suicide act, and it deals with various grief responses people have. If you weren't aware of these things before it can be insightful.
This complimentary copy was provided by NavPress in exchange for a review.
6/24/2011 11:51:02 AM
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Pitch Black tells the story of Morgan and her friends, who are dealing with the recent suicide of a close friend and member of their youth group. As the teens discuss the problem, they begin a spiral of deepening sorrow, and while some are able to rely on their faith, for some it feels less than helpful. As the days go by, the hopelessness of those who are relying on themselves begins to overwhelm them, and they begin to seriously consider drastic measures to fix their problems. The question becomes will they stay in the pitch black abyss or turn to the One who is a true friend.
I’m pretty far from being a teenager. I do have a teenage daughter, and as an avid reader, I insist on reading any materials she brings home, especially if they are unfamiliar to me. Having read the Hunger Games series, I find that it’s not always a waste of time, and while I don’t censor my daughter’s reading material, I do know what she’s reading, and I can talk to her about the topics. I say all of this to say – I feel as though I have recently become an expert in the teenage fiction arena, and so when I tell you that Pitch Black is an artful fit with a great message in a genre that is full of nihilistic and self-involved titles, I say it truthfully and armed with some experience.
In my life, I have had days when it seemed ridiculous to go on - every human being has. I’m grateful for a God who loves me enough to forgive me when I can’t forgive myself, to love me when I don’t love myself, and to turn desperate sorrow to infinite hope in the midst of any circumstance. Melody Carlson has the voice to explain that to teenagers and adults alike. That is a gift I’m glad she shares, for my own sake and my daughter’s.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255
6/2/2011 6:03:07 PM