Mental Illness in books

Mental Illness in books



Ten books that feature characters who have a mental illness


Thank you so much to The Broke and the Bookish for this meme.



Puddle Jumping (Puddle Jumping #1)

by Amber L. Johnson

Kindle Edition, 127 pages

Published June 29th 2014



Puddle Jumping was recommended to me and after I read Win Some, Lose Some – and even though I didn’t love it as much as WSLS – I enjoyed it nevertheless. It was sweet, emotional, and felt incredibly authentic – at least for me.

When it comes to love there’s no such thing as conventional.

Everyone thinks Colton Neely is special.

Lilly Evans just thinks he’s fascinating.

Once friends when they were younger, their bond is cut short due to her accident prone nature and they go their separate ways. Years later, they meet again and Lilly learns that there is something special about the boy she once knew, but she has no idea what it all means. And she’s not sure if she’s ready to find out.

When he walks through the corridor of her school the first day of her senior year, she knows that it’s time to get to know the real Colton Neely. The more she learns, the deeper she falls.

Their friendship grows into love, even as Colton does not express it in words. But one decision threatens to break down the world that Lilly has tried so hard to integrate into and she must figure out if the relationship can survive if they are apart.




Win Some, Lose Some

by Shay Savage

ebook, 425 pages

Published October 18th 2016


I’ve always loved heroes that were a bit socially awkward. The Rosie Project or Searching for Perfect were wonderful examples.

I loved that the entire book was from Matthew’s POV. The blackouts, haziness, the not remembering brought the issue home a little more than if it would have switch to another character.
Win Some, Lose Some was one of those feel-good books. The one that makes you smile and giddy. It’s exactly what I needed and wanted from this novel. So, thank you to the author for delivering an incredible book.

For Matthew Rohan, every day is a struggle. Each task others complete without thinking is a challenge for him. Recently orphaned, he has to finish the last few months of high school and take care of his disabled sister on his own.

When Mayra comes into his life, his comfortable routines implode. Matthew can’t handle change, but Mayra is unrelenting in her quest to understand him, to show him acceptance and maybe even love. When she breaks through his shell, Matthew’s world will never be the same again.

An awkward boy with Asperger’s Syndrome, a persistent girl who pulls him out of his isolated existence, and a lottery ticket that will change their lives forever.



The Rosie Project (Don Tillman #1)

by Graeme Simsion

Hardcover, 297 pages

Published October 1st 2013



This book was amazing!!!! It had some of the most hilarious scenes, dry humor which I adored, and an unique and fresh take on the contemporary romance – and all that while written by a guy. 

Don was incredibly straight forward, blunt, brutally honest and had the most analytical and pragmatic mind I’ve ever encountered in a romance book. His thought process was hilarious, and extremely entertaining. I pimped it to all of my friends. I should also mention that I listened to the audiobook which was incredibly well done.

Don Tillman, professor of genetics, has never been on a second date. He is a man who can count all his friends on the fingers of one hand, whose lifelong difficulty with social rituals has convinced him that he is simply not wired for romance. So when an acquaintance informs him that he would make a “wonderful” husband, his first reaction is shock. Yet he must concede to the statistical probability that there is someone for everyone, and he embarks upon The Wife Project. In the orderly, evidence-based manner with which he approaches all things, Don sets out to find the perfect partner. She will be punctual and logical—most definitely not a barmaid, a smoker, a drinker, or a late-arriver.

Yet Rosie Jarman is all these things. She is also beguiling, fiery, intelligent—and on a quest of her own. She is looking for her biological father, a search that a certain DNA expert might be able to help her with. Don’s Wife Project takes a back burner to the Father Project and an unlikely relationship blooms, forcing the scientifically minded geneticist to confront the spontaneous whirlwind that is Rosie—and the realization that love is not always what looks good on paper.

The Rosie Project is a moving and hilarious novel for anyone who has ever tenaciously gone after life or love in the face of overwhelming challenges.



by J.B. Salsbury

Paperback, 416 pages

Published November 15th 2016



Multiple thumps up!!!

After reading the blurb I HAD to read Split by J.B. Salsbury.

The entire premise of falling in love with someone that has a split personality disorder sounded extremly fascinating and totally intriguing. Just the thought alone was mind boggling.

Surprisingly, the author did an amazing job creating fantastic and fleshed out characters.

What do you do when you wake up with no memory of what you did last night?

Lucas spent the first half of his life protecting himself from others, but now his own mind is his biggest enemy. He doesn’t know what happens when the blackouts overtake him, but he can recall the feelings–the rage, the confusion, the fear. Thankfully the quiet life he’s found in Payson, Arizona has kept the darkness at bay. Until his boss’s estranged daughter shows up in town, asking questions she shouldn’t and sparking a desire Lucas can’t control. Getting close to Shyann is the best thing that’s ever happened to him, but when his blackouts return, unleashing the truth he’s battled so long to hide, he may just lose her forever . . .



The Bad Guy

by Celia Aaron

Kindle Edition, 414 pages

Published May 21st 2017


The main character in The Bad Guy, Sebastian, is one of the most fascinating characters I’ve read this year.  He’s clinically psychotic and his illness is front and center throughout of the book.  His lack of empathy and emotions is ultimately what made me love him!  Witnessing how he has to communicate the inner workings of his mind is fascinating.  If you’re a fan of this sub-genre, I highly recommend it!

My name is Sebastian Lindstrom, and I’m the villain of this story.
I’ve decided to lay myself bare. To tell the truth for once in my hollow life, no matter how dark it gets. And I can assure you, it will get so dark that you’ll find yourself feeling around the blackened corners of my mind, seeking a door handle that isn’t there.
Don’t mistake this for a confession. I neither seek forgiveness nor would I accept it. My sins are my own. They keep me company. Instead, this is the true tale of how I found her, how I stole her, and how I lost her.
She was a damsel, one who already had her white knight. But every fairy tale has a villain, someone waiting in the wings to rip it all down. A scoundrel who will set the world on fire if that means he gets what he wants. That’s me.
I’m the bad guy.



Some Sort of Crazy (Happy Crazy Love #2)

by Melanie Harlow

Kindle Edition, 236 pages

Published November 17th 2015



Apparently I have a thing for characters named Sebastian with mental health issues because Sebastian from Melanie Harlow’s Some Sort of Love also ranks high on my list.  His struggle to accept love while also managing OCD really hit the spot.  Harlow tackled his condition head on and it was a vivid portrayal of what someone with OCD deals with on a day to day basis.  This character and book were both amazing!

When a psychic tells Natalie Nixon her life is about to be upended by a mysterious stranger, she laughs it off. After all, she has everything she’s ever wanted—a successful bakery, a the perfect boyfriend, and the keys to her dream house.

Who could possibly make her want to throw all that away?

Then Miles Haas comes back to town.

But he’s no stranger—they’ve known each other since high school. Plus, he’s only around for the summer, he’s still a shameless playboy, and he makes a living writing articles for a men’s magazine with titles like ‘Should You Bang the Boss’s Daughter? A Flowchart’ and ‘Butt Stuff for Beginners: A Field Guide.’

He’s not the man of her dreams, and she’s not about to abandon everything she’s worked so hard for just for a little fun. Except he makes her laugh like no one else, smells like heaven, and looks sexy as hell in those panty-melting glasses.


Winter (The Lunar Chronicles #4)

by Marissa Meyer

Hardcover, 1st, 827 pages

Published November 10th 2015


I’m not sure we ever a specific diagnosis for Winter, but the book opens to the reader being told she’s crazy.  We witness her suffer from acute bouts of paranoia and hallucinations and it’s one of the most entertaining books I’ve ever read or listened to.  I’ve circle back around to The Lunar Chronicles several times to reread and Winter is one of the books that tops my list.  It’s not only a fantastic fairytale retelling, but an amazingly imaginative and entertaining read.

Princess Winter is admired by the Lunar people for her grace and kindness, and despite the scars that mark her face, her beauty is said to be even more breathtaking than that of her stepmother, Queen Levana.

Winter despises her stepmother, and knows Levana won’t approve of her feelings for her childhood friend–the handsome palace guard, Jacin. But Winter isn’t as weak as Levana believes her to be and she’s been undermining her stepmother’s wishes for years. Together with the cyborg mechanic, Cinder, and her allies, Winter might even have the power to launch a revolution and win a war that’s been raging for far too long.

Can Cinder, Scarlet, Cress, and Winter defeat Levana and find their happily ever afters? Fans will not want to miss this thrilling conclusion to Marissa Meyer’s national bestselling Lunar Chronicles series.


Fixed on You (Fixed #1)

by Laurelin Paige

ebook, 231 pages

Published June 22nd 2013



Hudson is my #1 Top Fave BBF of all time.  He’s been labeled as clinically psychotic and gets a kick out of manipulating other people’s lives.  His love interest, Alayna Withers is the perfect match for him!  Both main characters in this novel suffer from mental health issues. Together they manage to deal not only with their own issues, but outside forces that fight to tear them apart.  It’s an emotional and engaging read that’s over the top sexy.  I highly recommend it! ~ Tijuana

This series was fantastic in more than one way. But what really stood out and stuck with me over the years was Alayna’s struggle with mental illness. It’s usually the other way around, the hero the broken and almost too flawed character. I loved the reverse personalities. They truly captivated me throughout the entire trilogy. ~ Corina

Stalking and restraining orders are a thing of Alayna Wither’s past. With her MBA newly in hand, she has her future figured out — move up at the nightclub she works at and stay away from any guy who might trigger her obsessive love disorder. A perfect plan.

But what Alayna didn’t figure on is Hudson Pierce, the new owner of the nightclub. He’s smart, rich, and gorgeous — the kind of guy Alayna knows to stay away from if she wants to keep her past tendencies in check. Except, Hudson’s fixed his sights on her. He wants her in his bed and makes no secret of it.

Avoiding him isn’t an option after he offers a business proposition she can’t turn down and she’s drawn further into his universe, unable to resist his gravitational pull. When she learns Hudson has a dark history of his own, she realizes too late that she’s fallen for the worst man she could possibly get involved with. Or maybe their less than ideal pasts give them an opportunity to heal each other and finally find the love their lives have been missing.


The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie(Mackenzies & McBrides #1)

by Jennifer Ashley

Mass Market Paperback, 1st Edition, 320 pages

Published May 1st 2009



This book was one of the BEST historical romance novels I’ve EVER read!! I absolutely adored this book. I it’s one of my most favorite of all and there are not many characters that can compete with the uniqueness of Ian Mackenzie. It was superb and I can only recommend it to anyone!! ~ Corina

The year is 1881. Meet the Mackenzie family–rich, powerful, dangerous, eccentric. A lady couldn’t be seen with them without ruin. Rumors surround them–of tragic violence, of their mistresses, of their dark appetites, of scandals that set England and Scotland abuzz.

The youngest brother, Ian, known as the Mad Mackenzie, spent most of his young life in an asylum, and everyone agrees he is decidedly odd. He’s also hard and handsome and has a penchant for Ming pottery and beautiful women.

Beth Ackerley, widow, has recently come into a fortune. She has decided that she wants no more drama in her life. She was raised in drama–an alcoholic father who drove them into the workhouse, a frail mother she had to nurse until her death, a fussy old lady she became constant companion to. No, she wants to take her money and find peace, to travel, to learn art, to sit back and fondly remember her brief but happy marriage to her late husband.

And then Ian Mackenzie decides he wants her.

The first of a new historical series.



Real (Real #1)

by Katy Evans

ebook, 293 pages

Published April 8th 2013



Katy Evans caught me completely off guard with Remington Tate in the best way possible.  The sheer power of his emotions drew me in like no other.  He’s over the top and larger than life when he’s on a high, but manic and out of control when he’s on a low.  This book explores the amazing ability love (and music) has on soothing internal battles.

A fallen boxer.
A woman with a broken dream.
A competition…

He even makes me forget my name. One night was all it took, and I forgot everything and anything except the sexy fighter in the ring who sets my mind ablaze and my body on fire with wanting…

Remington Tate is the strongest, most confusing man I’ve ever met in my life.

He’s the star of the dangerous underground fighting circuit, and I’m drawn to him as I’ve never been drawn to anything in my life. I forget who I am, what I want, with just one look from him. When he’s near, I need to remind myself that I am strong—but he is stronger. And now it’s my job to keep his body working like a perfect machine, his taut muscles primed and ready to break the bones of his next opponents…

But the one he’s most threatening to, now, is me.

I want him. I want him without fear. Without reservations.

If only I knew for sure what it is that he wants from me?

About corina

I’m a blogger, photographer, and unapologetic book addict. I love strong female characters, major jerks, and Happily Ever Afters.

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