Cameron and the Girls (Hardcover)
"Mad crashes into happy and sad bounces off of guilty until they all live in a big smoky heap in my mind." Fourteen-year-old Cameron Galloway of Lexington, Washington, understands that he has schizophreniform disorder and needs to take pills to quiet the voices in his head. But he likes the voices, especially the gentle, encouraging voice of The Girl. Conflicted, he turns to his friend Nina Savage, who is clinically depressed and can relate to his horror of the numbing effects of medication. They make a pact to ditch the pills. At first they feel triumphant, but soon Cameron's untreated mind goes haywire--to disastrous effect.
"Without passing judgment, Averett addresses the issue of free choice versus protective care. . . Readers will have no trouble recognizing the impact of Cameron's hallucinations and his burning need for independence."
"Cameron's first-person narration allows access to an absorbing glimpse of schizophrenic behavior. . . . Thoughtful and eye-opening."
"This is a well-written, taut, and empathetic novel that provides readers with an unnerving vicarious experience."
—School Library Journal
"This novel is a nuanced treatment of a difficult topic, sustained by narrative drive."
"Averett does a good job of developing Cameron's situations in a way that helps the reader understand the true depth of the struggle that Cameron is facing; he uses language that makes the internal conflict explode off the page. This is a raw, real, quick read that looks into darkness of mental illness."
—VOYA, 4Q 3P J S
"[Averett's] accessible writing makes Cameron and his struggle vivid to young readers, and they'll find this an eye-opening walk in somebody else's shoes."
—The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books