Book Review: "Pitch Black" by Melody Carlson
“Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem."
- Phil Donahue
I hope no one has ever experienced the death of someone close to them. Unfortunately the majority of people have. It's even more sad when you know someone who's committed suicide. As the 2nd most common form of death among teenagers, it's very rare to go to a high school that has not experienced the effects of it. Even more scarier are the number of teens who have considered the thought of taking their own lives.
Pitch Black, book 4 in the True Colors series, takes a look at teen suicide, a sensitive yet important issue. Morgan's best friend has taken his life and she and two friends are struggling to figure out why. They come up with the solution that it is best to join him and they make a suicide pact. As Morgan finds out what really happen, she decides to rethink her stance and help others realize that it's not worth it to end your life.
I feel that this was a very good book that teens should read. What I found interesting is that Jason tried to kill himself not for the sake of his peers' attention but for his father's. Imagine the guilt his father will now face the rest of his life. The essay about the effects of Tylenol overdose was very informative and should be made more public. I also appreciated Carlson's acknowledgment that Christian teens sometimes shy away from situations they are uncomfortable in handling. When Morgan found herself questioning God, her youth group and even her best friend distanced themselves away from her. Those are the times when they should have been there for her the most.
I feel that many teens believe that no one would care if they died and everyone would be better off if they were gone. I know that because I used to feel that way myself. This should not be the case. Suicide is a topic that many Christians are afraid to bring up. Churches and youth groups need to be aware that even their members are struggling with this idea. I hope that more people, teens and adults, read this book and understand that there needs to be more attention brought to this issue. It might even save a life.
Pitch Black by Melody Carlson is published by NavPress (2004)