As part of my Freelance Journalism and Travel Writing course, I’m frequently tasked with writing assignments. I’ll be sharing these on my blog as it would be a shame for these not to be shared! 🙂
If you could change any decision in your life, would you?
In The Midnight Library, we follow Nora Seed as she battles crippling sadness and a longing for a life, any life, that could have been.
You see, Nora could have been married, an Olympic swimmer or a Rockstar, had she made the “right” decisions but recently fired from her job and estranged from her brother; she’s struggling to get by. The final straw comes when her cat is found dead in the street, and Nora finally loses her battle with depression.
When she takes her life, Nora finds herself at a strange library in between worlds. The time is always midnight, and the librarian is a familiar face from her past. Here, a catalogue of her alternative realities sits on the shelves to explore until she finds the perfect life to settle on.
As it tackles such sensitive topics, those with mental health issues should be aware and take care when reading, as, at times, it can be a triggering read.
This book exceeded my expectations of a sci-fi, multiverse book and brought a refreshing and unique mental health angle to it that I was not expecting.
Topics such as depression and suicide can be intense, and as someone that suffers from anxiety, it was a challenging read in places. Still, Matt Haig handles the topic with sensitivity and expert knowledge, channelling his own experiences of depression into his writing.
It can feel like an all too familiar pattern when following Nora’s thought process. Still, we start to heal those processes with her, eventually finding joy in the seemingly uninteresting aspects of life.
It is rare to find work that speaks so candidly of suicide and depression and come away at the end feeling better than when you started.