To be honest, I picked this book off a list without even looking at what it was about. After reading the first chapter, I was thinking, “wow, this is strange.” Then I thought, hmmm, I wonder if this is about mental illness. Google helped me out and then the book started to fall into place for me.
The protagonist, Caden Bosch, seems torn between two worlds. One world is the world where he is a crewman on a ship headed for Challenger Deep, the ocean’s deepest trench.
The other world is the actual world where his family lives. Caden experiences paranoia and voices speaking to him. He is convinced that people in the world he lives with his family are trying to kill him.
This book gives a very realistic view of what mental illness can be and how it takes hold of the person with the illness. The book itself will be confusing in parts, because mental illness is confusing. The book is written from Caden’s perspective and from that perspective, the reader gets a real sense of what it feels like to fight a mental illness. The reader can feel the struggle within this character as the character struggles through “getting well.”
Challenger Deep was a challenge to read at times. It twists and is uncomfortable at times, but gives a realistic view of mental illness. It was unlike anything I’d ever read before and I enjoyed it.