The Book Look: It really is a Funny Story

Its Kind of a Funny Story, by Ned Vizzini.

It’s Kind of a Funny Story, by Ned Vizzini.

Belen Silva, The Book Look Columnist

Here are some things that are funny. Saturday Night Live skits about Donald Trump, when people look toward the camera in the show The Office, and the good old fashioned banana peel slip. The punchline in It’s Kind of a Funny Story, written by Ned Vinzzini, is main character Craig being admitted into a psychiatric hospital.

Fifteen-year-old Craig Gilner has just been accepted to the most prestigious high school in New York City, Executive Pre-Professional. By definition, a “new school set up to create the leaders of tomorrow.” No pressure.  Between endless amounts of homework, challenging classes and high expectations of others, there is hardly any room to think. Along with stress vomiting and seeing his best friend making out with the love of his life every day, Craig voluntarily checks himself in as a patient after almost trying to kill himself.

(Vinzzini) has written many teen fiction novels about anxiety and depression with a humorous tone that that provides an honest and relatable relationship with readers.”

— Belen Silva

On a Sunday morning Craig begins the day with a schizophrenic named Jimmy. By lunch time, he gets a roommate, has made three friends and gained one secret admirer. Throughout the next four days, Craig learns more about himself isolated from the world and begins to manage his mental issues. Being at 6th North gave Craig a wide perspective on how people deal with their mental health in different ways, but more importantly that they live. What they are going through does not stop them from living their own lives.

Most students can sympathize with Craig since they are going through similar experiences. This is a great book for anyone who is having trouble coping with depression or anxiety, stress vomiting, girls, parents, expectations and learning to live.

The author himself has had the same experience. He checked himself into a hospital and eight days after being released, he began writing It’s Kind of a Funny Story. While struggling with his mental illness, Vinzzini ignited a light for readers through his books. He has written many teen fiction novels about anxiety and depression with a humorous tone that that provides an honest and relatable relationship with readers.

He finished this book in less than a month and it was named a New York Times Best Seller. Unfortunately, Vinzzini took his own life in 2013, yet his spirit lives within the books which he weaved from his own struggles.

This book is filled with wonderful life lessons and hope for anyone dealing with any kind of problem, whether it be mental illness or not. And I leave you with Vinzzini’s last words in the book:

“So now live for real… Live. Live. Live. Live Live.”