Monday, April 25, 2005

Multiple Choice, by Janet Tashjian


Hadn't read a good book in a while. I mean, I really good book.

Multiple Choice is the story of Monica who suffers from obsessive-compulsive disorder. She develops a game to try to help her overcome her compulsions but instead it makes her life much much worse.

There are a couple of things I like about this book. First of all, it doesn't have a happy ending, although it ends on an optimistic note. Not everything gets solved and her path to recpvery will definitely take longer than the story allows. Second, the subject matter is original and interesting. I felt a strong personal interest in the problem (I have some compulsions of my own so I could sympathize with her fears about making mistakes and her need to do things right all the time). I found myself being drawn into her issues.

And any book that draws me in and won't let me put it down is a definite keeper!


blogs said...

multiple choice is an awesome book by janet tashjian im in grade 7 and i luvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvv it bye BY:?

Fiona said...

I just read this one, finally. I really enjoyed it...I felt that I too could empathize with Monica and her obsessive worrying, and the whole multiple choice game was a great invention that made it enjoyable to read.
I read Kissing Doorknobs first, and enjoyed that one too. It's interesting comparing the two, as they show different forms of OCD...Monica has a stronger obsessive side and Tara from KD has a stronger compulsive side.

I found it odd that in Multiple Choice, Monica is never actually labelled as OCD even though she clearly is. Maybe Tashjian was expressing her own sentiments when she made Darcy say that she didn't see the point in labelling people. Even so, I couldn't help but feel that if she HAD been labelled as OCD, she could have gotten proper medical attention for it and other people, like Lynn, could see that this was a real illness.

Just a few random thoughts, anyway :p Have you read The Virgin Suicides, out of interest? Totally unrelated, it's just that I recently read it as it's been so highly reccommended from all over the internet, but I HATED it. Not to prejudice your view, or anything...

Paul said...

I think I agree with you that she would have gotten more help if she had been correctly diagnosed, but I also understand the decision to avoid the label.

As for "Virgin Suicides," I haven't read the book but I saw the film (not the same thing I know, but I love Sofia Cappola's work!). I found the film very haunting and disturbing. It sticks with me and I remember most of the film even 5? years later. It doesn't really seem like a book I would enjoy because of the ending most of all.