Rez Rebel by Melanie Florence

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*Trigger Warning: This book deals with suicides on a Native Reserve in Canada.Though the story itself is fictional, this is a true epidemic that must be discussed. However, due to the sensitive material, there are those that may be triggered by the content. If you find that you are, please text START to Crisis Textline at 747-747.









Whew. This was an incredibly fast-paced read. It was handled with compassion and grace for such an incredibly devastating topic. 

Floyd has already lost one of his best friends to suicide. When the body is found is described briefly, and it is mentioned how Aaron kills himself. It only mentions how one other person in the book dies by suicide, and the rest are only mentioned as cause of death as a generalized suicide with no means attached. 

Melanie Florence knows what she's doing when it comes to mimicking a teen mind. She is able to draw the full scope of how devastated Floyd is by his people dying around him while also discussing his hope and how he is no where near depression or substance abuse. Floyd is a strong character that is able to see where hope lies in his tribe and works desperately to do what he can to save them all.  The rest of his friends are a bit two dimensional, except for Mouse. However, I still loved the group dynamic and it brought back comforting memories of The Outsiders.

I really appreciated this book, guys. It is so important for teens and adults to understand that it is a discussion to be had. In the book, there is a group of girls discussed. Their ages might surprise adults--and it shouldn't. More and more very young kids are attempting to kill themselves. And it is incredibly important that Florence included this bit in the book. I also work as a Crisis Counselor, and the topics reflected in this book are seen daily with the conversations I have with kids--the hopelessness, the feelings of wanting their families to be better off and that they'll be better off with them, the bullying, and the bright little spark that still wants to live. 

Read this book for the sake of the kids around you. Read this book if you've never contemplation killing yourself, but know friends that have. Read this book. Just because it is focused on the epidemic of suicides on reservations does not mean it can't be applied elsewhere--this is a universal topic that Florence handled with dignity, grace, and hope.

Thank you to NetGalley, Melanie Florence, and James Lorimer & Co for the free ARC in exchange for an honest review.


Comments

  1. This sounds like a heaetbreaking read but so important. I'm definitely adding this to my TBR.

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    1. It really is. It ends on a fairly light note, so you won't be haunted by it. But it is something worth thinking about after finishing.

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  2. This history is bad and so heartbreaking that it still doesn't improve

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    1. I know! And the new movie Wind River tries to shed light on it, too. It shatters me.

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  3. This is one of the oens I have added to my TBR. It looks so fascinating!

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  4. OK, seriously?! Your like a dealer on the corner saying "Here read this one. It's good. All the cool kids are." HA HA this is for sure one I need to look into.

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  5. So sad, but such a powerful book on a hard subject.

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  6. I have been searching for books that deals about suicide and suicidal thoughts in a RIGHT WAY. You will be surprised how many portrays them absurdly in a misleading way.

    Gayathri @ Musings Over Nothing

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