Hystera by Leora Skolkin-Smith is a haunting and captivating story of a young woman who struggles with mental illness in the turbulent times of the 1970s.
Lillian Weill is a young college student who has been on a downhill slide ever since her father’s accident. Her mother, a powerful force to be reckoned with, has openly blamed Lillian for not hearing her father’s tragic fall the night he had his strokes. Lillian slips further and further away from reality until one night she attempts to take her own life and voluntarily checks herself into the psychiatric ward of the hospital. The doctor would like to help Lillian, but she just wants to escape reality and stay safely hidden behind the white walls of the hospital ward.
I highly recommend this book. The writing is outstanding and I was completely hooked from the very start until the end. It’s a powerful story about mental illness and the pressures of life and family. Lillian has retreated into a sort of alternate reality in order to escape the real world and attempt to cope. She has blocked out much about the night of her father’s accident, and once she is in the hospital she begins to try to remember, and tries to figure out what has happened to her. It is passionate, even a little disturbing at times, and yet surprisingly intimate. It’s a short but powerful read that will stick with you and have you thinking about it long after you have finished the book.
Causes Leora Skolkin-Smith Supports
Israel/Palestine issues women issues Mental Health system