By: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
I’ve figured out there’s a difference between the meaning of the word real and the meaning of the word true. Reality is all the stuff that won’t go away, like school and gravity, no matter how much you wish it would. It’s the ceiling your imagination bumps up against. People with my condition just keep floating on up as if there weren’t any ceiling, with every so often a few hard falls and then more floating.
But true doesn’t float. It just is.
This book was so different, and Calvin & Hobbes being one of my favorite Sunday newspaper comic strips and the pretense of the story, I couldn’t help but add this title to my TBR list.
Calvin is basically a parody, but in this case it’s about a 17-year-old boy named Calvin. He was born the day the last C&H strip was published, and Calvin believes that he is Calvin-strip Calvin re-incarnated – kind of.
Maybe Calvin was so real to so many people that on the day I was borm, which was the day the last Calvin and Hobbes comic came out, maybe all the love and sadness people felt… I opened up my mouth to get my first breath, and I just sucked it in.
… I was Calvin come to life!
When Calvin is diagnosed with schizophrenia he believes Bill Watterson would be able to “heal” him, or at least create a new strip where Calvin is not sick and he cannot see Hobbes in the corner of his eye. And thus a great expedition from Leamington, Ontario across Lake Erie to Cleveland, where he is supposed to meet Mr. Watterson for breakfast and hopefully he will have a new strip awaiting his arrival.
The book is not very long, but it definitely shutters through the reality of somebody who has has to deal with mental illness, one, that if treated properly, allows a person to live a happy life. Calvin is incredibly smart, and wants to study neuroscience, he still saw the alien teacher, and imagined monsters and Spaceman Spiff.
I’m not sure how to properly describe this book. I really enjoyed it. It definitely touched on the importance of taking one’s mental health seriously, and that running away or using somebody else as a scapegoat will not solve the problems inside your head.
Me: Could you please just go away?
Hobbes: I want it to be like old times.
Me: It’s not socially acceptable at my age to have an imaginary friend.
Hobbes: Do we care?