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Summary

"I'm not crazy. I don't see what the big deal is about what happened. But apparently someone does think it's a big deal because here I am. I bet it was my mother. She always overreacts."

Fifteen-year-old Jeff wakes up on New Year's Day to find himself in the hospital. Make that the psychiatric ward. With the nut jobs. Clearly, this is all a huge mistake. Forget about the bandages on his wrists and the notes on his chart. Forget about his problems with his best friend, Allie, and her boyfriend, Burke. Jeff's perfectly fine, perfectly normal, not like the other kids in the hospital with him. Now they've got problems. But a funny thing happens as his 45-day sentence drags on: the crazies start to seem less crazy.

Compelling, witty, and refreshingly real, Suicide Notes is a darkly humorous novel from award-winning author Michael Thomas Ford that examines that fuzzy line between "normal" and the rest of us.

©2008 Michael Thomas Ford (P)2009 Audible, Inc.

What listeners say about Suicide Notes

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

This is one of my favourite books!

I have listened to this book at least twelve times, even when I haven’t read this book in a while I still think about it and laugh at the weird things that happen.

1 person found this helpful

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lost me when turned into a series of sexual abuse

was drawn in, thinking about suicide and how different people are drawn to it could identify with some of them then we have 3 of them involved in sexual abuse before ditching the wider suicidal people for a single issue and then giving phone numbers not for my region and again focusing in on just their one group they were interested in.
pity they didn't make it clear from the start as I wouldn't have invested so much into it only to be jettisoned, it is called suicide notes but if the main character had left one then the story would have been unnecessary.
if the behaviour detailed as happening there was to happen in a real unit then there would have been serious investigations into the running of it and the competence of the staff, what about the rest of us who are suicidal, the other characters in the first part of the book and those who identify with them only to be ditched. this book could be dangerous
support groups should be broader than the one issue and also be relevant to the areas the book is being sold

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Fantastic

It made me think, feel, love and cry.
Honestly an awesome book! Thank you, Author

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Enjoyable story on a serious subject

Where does Suicide Notes rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Suicide notes is one of my favourite Audible books. It's another coming of age book but nevertheless has an appeal to all ages. It tackles the devastating effects of teenage suicide and in particularly the feelings of hopelessness and helplessness that drives this.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Suicide Notes?

The book is set out like a diary, where our young troubled teen logs each days activity in a care facility. As such it's relatively easy to create memories that stick with the reader. I have to say I think my favourite moment is right at the start where he's insistent that he's not crazy.

What does Joe Caron bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

The narration of this story is very good. What I most enjoyed in the narration is how Joe Caron manages to convey excitement. Such moments are really enjoyable to listen to.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

My feelings towards this book are indifferent. It tackles a very dark subject matter in a humorous and enjoyable way. In fact I can guarantee you will chuckle. It's certainly no tear jerker, (compared to The Fault In Our Stars anyway), but has delicate scenes that are wonderfully written.

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    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Leslie H. Nicoll
  • Leslie H. Nicoll
  • 21-03-10

Entertaining narrative for a serious subject

This story is written as a diary, with each chapter being one day in fifteen year old Jeff's 45 day hospitalization after a failed suicide attempt. The subject is serious, but Jeff is a great narrator: funny, sarcastic, and insightful. Youth suicide is an important problem in the US (third leading cause of death among people ages 15-19) and this book provides useful information while at the same time telling a good story. Resources for depression and suicide are included in an afterword. This book works well in audio format because the chapters are very short (5-10 minutes each) and can be listened to easily in short bursts. Recommended.

9 people found this helpful

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  • Maja (The Nocturnal Library)
  • 12-05-15

Astonishingly good

After an attempted suicide, Jeff wakes up in a psychiatric ward where he is forced to spend the next 45 days. He doesn’t want to and he’s determined not to cooperate, but his stay isn’t optional and his parents refuse to take him home. Finding their son almost bloodless in a bathtub isn’t something they particularly want to relive, and if the psych ward is what it takes to keep him alive, that’s where he’ll stay for as long as it takes.

Jeff handles his situation with lots of denial wrapped in good humor. He absolutely refuses to acknowledge that he has a problem and he is determined not to talk about his reasons for cutting his wrists open. According to him, his parents and the doctor made a mistake and he shouldn’t be locked up with the crazies.

Jeff’s story is heartwarming and poignant, but it’s also simple and laugh-out-loud funny. This diary-like narrative is one of the most honest things I’ve ever read. There are no heroes, no villains, no Big Drama whatsoever. It’s just a story about a boy that could easily be your next door neighbor or your second cousin. It’s not unusual at all and that’s what makes it so special.

Jeff’s character was truly done brilliantly. He is easily relatable, even (or especially) when he’s being obnoxious to his doctors and his fellow patience. Avoidance is his way to handle everything, but every now and again, a real feeling shines trough, be it anger at his parents for daring to save his life, resentment towards his doctors and nurses and the complete and utter hopelessness he feels about his situation.

I want to make this very clear: Suicide Notes is a book that deals with serious issues, but it’s rarely a sad read and it’s never angsty. Jeff’s sarcastic voice determines the overall tone, which is more funny than anything else. Yet Ford still manages to bring his point across by making every one of Jeff’s jokes louder and more touching than any sorrowful moment could possibly be.

I’ve tried this in both formats and while I generally prefer audio, in this case I’d strongly recommend the printed word. Although he’s a good narrator, Joe Caron didn’t succeed in capturing Jeff’s unique voice and most of Jeff’s sarcastic remarks somehow fell flat in the narrator’s interpretation.

If I had my way (but really, I never do), every thirteen-year-old on the planet would have to read three books: Brooklyn, Burning by Steve Brezenoff, Gone, Gone, Gone by Hannah Moskowitz and Suicide Notes by Michael Thomas Ford. These three books promote understanding and tolerance in such a quiet, unobtrusive way, and even though we’re seeing more and more diversity, these are the three that always stay with me.

6 people found this helpful

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  • jbeeloves
  • 25-11-19

Be prepared

I admit, I purchased this audiobook because the title intrigued me but I did not expect anything special; I have never been so wrong my whole life. This audiobook will make you question your sanity. The story revolves around a sensitive subject, yet Michael Thomas Ford, the literary genius that he is, found a way to make it very entertaining and engaging. It's a perfect combination of fun, humor, and melancholy. Another incredible thing about this audiobook is that the plot twists are very well hidden behind the narrative's simplicity - you'll never see them coming!

The main character is so relatable, so real, (and extremely sarcastic LOL!) it's hard to believe that he's just a product of the author's imagination. The supporting characters are also very well written that you'd think they're actual human beings. They will make you think how "normal" it is to be "crazy."

Michael Thomas Ford is a brilliant author and Joe Caron is a marvelous narrator, it's a match made in heaven!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Amanda W.
  • 28-10-18

This was a terrible book.

The main character is such a shit! He is sarcastic to the point of aggravation, constantly talks down to the people around him, and is just a terrible human being.

The book got only slightly better by the end. I’m sorry I wasted a credit on this.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Rebecca
  • 30-05-18

My new favorite book

My new favorite book!
So funny. Amazing storyline and the plot twist at the end!! Was not expecting that
Loved it

1 person found this helpful

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  • shasta
  • 18-01-16

The first book I have listened too...

Would you consider the audio edition of Suicide Notes to be better than the print version?

I have not read the print version, but I would have probably enjoyed reading it more.

Who was your favorite character and why?

My favourite character would be Jeff, the main character of course. I just love how incredibly sarcastic he is.

Did the narration match the pace of the story?

I would say the narration more or less matched the pace of the story; if anything it was a tad slow. The emotion it did not do justice for.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

I think I could have listened to this entire book in one sitting; I did find myself listening to it outside my commute in which it was intended for.

Any additional comments?

The story to this book is amazing from beginning to end. The story had some twists that I only some coming very shortly before they happened. It had points where I felt the need to push plause for a moment to fully process what I had just heard, whether it be out of awkwardness, shock or deep emotion... Only to find myself pushing play once more only a few short minutes later. Unfortunately I don't think the narrator did Jeff's- or really any character- justice. Perhaps this is coming from a place of naivety, but the narrator was very obviously reading a book versus being a character. Perhaps someone who voice acts would be better suited for a first person book such as this. I wish when Jeff was yelling the narrator would really yell or when Jeff's world was crumbling around him that you could actually hear the emotion in his voice. I got used to the narrator, but I feel some of the more emotional scenes lost some of their intensity because the narrator didn't speak organically, or like a normal person would. Overall I would highly recommend the printed version and recommend the audible version as well.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Tony
  • Tony
  • 21-03-10

Entertaining narrative for a serious subject

This story is written as a diary, with each chapter being one day in fifteen year old Jeff's 45 day hospitalization after a failed suicide attempt. The subject is serious, but Jeff is a great narrator: funny, sarcastic, and insightful. Youth suicide is an important problem in the US (third leading cause of death among people ages 15-19) and this book provides useful information while at the same time telling a good story. Resources for depression and suicide are included in an afterword. This book works well in audio format because the chapters are very short (5-10 minutes each) and can be listened to easily in short bursts. Recommended.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Jennifer Thompson
  • 28-04-21

awesome

It was so good I really did have trouble finishing it. Really good book thank you to the author

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  • Greenigirl76
  • 09-03-21

Not my normal

This wasn’t too bad it was a good book but not my normal type. I am not sure if I will read more from this author as it’s not really my normal type of read.

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  • Keysha
  • 22-11-20

Spoiler it was amazing

In the beginning the narrators voice was kind of bland but after awhile I liked it it was nice and put me at ease this story was really something else I was expecting a depressing story but it made me laugh a lot I actually guessed what the main character was going through and I loved it it was an amazing story I finished it in one day would recommend to anyone who asks me for a book recommendation