My Review of “The Promise Between Us” by Barbara Claypole White
WOW! I appreciate that Barbara Claypole White, Author of “The Promise Between Us” has written such a powerful and descriptive novel about mental illness. The genres for this book are Fiction and Women’s Fiction, but Barbara Claypole White describes mental illness in such a realistic and enlightening way.
The author describes Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, High Anxiety Disorder Panic Attacks, and Depression which can be seen in her characters. Many of the disorders that are mentioned cause feelings of shame, self-deprecating behavior, guilt, repetitive thoughts or ruminating, loss of worth, and are emotionally painful to deal with. The author gives some past family history to describe what factors that could contribute genetically , emotionally or physically to some of these disorders. The author also discusses emotional and sexual abuse, which is significant. Through the characters, we can see how this affects their relationships and lives.
Metal artist Katie Mack realistically is aware that she ran away from her baby daughter Maisie nine years ago,in an attempt to Maisie safe from her obsessive compulsive thoughts, and fear of hurting her. Katie’s husband at the time could not comprehend what was going on, was not capable of giving Katie emotional support. He could not recognize that Katie needed psychological help. Katie could not afford the proper Psychologist or Psychiatric help, and trying to self-educate herself to become aware, she tries to deal with her OCD. Katie tries facing her fears. One of her fears is fire and Katie uses fire and metal to make artistic creations.
Katie is showing her artistic metal creations to students and meets her daughter Maisie. Maisie thinks that her birth mother is dead. Katie notices that Maisie is showing many of the symptoms of OCD. Katie is facing a dilemma. How can Kate help Maisie get the proper help?
In this novel, the author discusses mental illness, making therapy available to those who need it, encouraging honesty in relationships, and having a support system in place. Barbara Claypole White also discusses the importance of family, friends, support, love and hope. I would highly recommend this significant novel to readers of Women’s Fiction. I received an Advanced Reading Copy for my honest review.