What If
200p. West 44. Dec. 2018. Tr $19.95. ISBN 9781538382585.
Gr 9 Up—Josh Baker is going through life feeling not quite understood. He has to go through ritual methods to complete everyday tasks and constantly doubts himself. He and his sister, Julia, are at a new school where Josh feels the pressure to perform well so his family doesn't have to move again. His one solace is losing himself in drumming. Another new student arrives in his English class, Mage, who also shares his love of music, and they develop a bond. With the help of medication and the understanding of his family, friends, and teachers, Josh makes strides at controlling and living with his OCD. While the poetic style of writing might seem choppy, it represents Josh's thoughts as he deals with his illness. Told in first person, the novel clearly creates a deep connection with the protagonists and readers. The secondary characters are not as well developed.
VERDICT This is a quick read for large collections.

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