Jun 18, 2010

Review | Lisa, Bright and Dark by John Neufeld

Lisa Shilling is 16, smart, attractive--and she is losing her mind. Some days are "light," and everything is normal; during her "dark" days, she hides deep within herself, and nothing can reach her. Her teachers ignore what is happening. Her parents deny it. Lisa's friends are the only ones who are listening--and they walk with her where adults fear to tread.

Thoughts: When I first picked up this book in Jr. High, it instantly became one of my favorites. So when I saw it at a used book store, I had to get it because I remembered loving it.

I enjoyed it again, but after reading it this time around I realized how outdated the story really is. I guess just didn't notice this when I first read it, but now it was something that constantly bothered me.

The characters were not really like teens today, and I am so accustomed to reading YA books that portray teens like they presently are, that reading this sort of threw me off a bit.

Other than that though, I really love the story. I think it would've been a bit more interesting if it was from Lisa's point of view, but I'm not sure how that could've worked. Instead, we see everything that happens to Lisa from an aquaintance who gets a bit more involved as the story unfolds.

Although I want to say I recommend this book to everyone, I'm not too sure if many YA readers will like it because it was written for teens in the late sixties. So, it makes it a bit harder to really connect with the characters and enjoy the story. In my opinion, it is still a great book.

Favorite Quote: "Elizabeth spoke first. 'The trouble with reasonable adult human beings is that they collapse when they meet other reasonable human beings. We don't.'"

This book was purchased by myself at a local bookstore.


  1. I love your honest opinion about the books you read!
    This seems like a nice book,though there is a little language problem as you say..
    I love the quote!

  2. You bring up the thought of how teens will portray our current teen books years from now. Even though it would it be harder to relate, I think it would be cool to see how a teen's life was like in that time period. Thanks for the great and thought provoking review! :)

  3. Thanks so much for your honest opinion - that is ALWAYS appreciated! It does sound like a great read. Is it based on a true story at all?

  4. What a good review. I've found the same thing when I try to go back and read books I enjoyed "back when."

    Here from the CEP!

  5. Sounds good. I understand that feeling where impressions might change when re-reading a loved book after a long time. That you still enjoyed it was good.