Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock

Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock - Matthew Quick
This story is about Leonard Peacock saying goodbye to the 4 people he finds important before he kills his former best friend and himself. It is written from Leonard's point of view, a character with depression who is suicidal.This book could be triggering.
 
I listened to this book and I think it was a great way receive this story. The narrator is amazing, and gives this story an intensity that I don't know that I would have gotten so strongly if I just read the book. I think listening to it pushed this from 4 stars to 5. This book is short but it packs a huge punch. I had to take out my earbuds out twice because I was listening to this book at work and was getting really emotional. This book is heartbreaking, but I could identify times in my own life where had the same feelings and emotions that Quick captured in this book. For me these feelings and emotions aren't things I have had to deal with in a long time but it rings true to the way I felt when I was dealing with them.
 
I read some a lot of other people's reviews for this book and people seem to really like it or feel like Leonard Peacock is a pretentious self-centered asshole who they couldn't empathize with and who needed to pull himself up by the bootstraps. Another running theme with people who fall in to the latter camp is that they didn't understand what the point of this book was, to which I think the point is that it's an honest look into what depression and suicidal thoughts look like. Quick consulted with and got help from a number professionals in writing this book and I think it shows.
 
I could empathize with Leonard and the broken feeling he expresses. Yes, Leonard is in ways self-centered, and pretentious. Most teens are, it's part of growing up and developing a complete world view (pretty sure I learned an applicable psychology term for this but all that's coming to mind is adolescent egocentrism). You can see Leonard growing as a person because he acknowledges that he is doing (the way he treats his teachers) or has done (the whole situation with Lauren) shitty things and he tries to right some of those or at least confront them.
 
 
These are two of my favorite quotes from the book. One because it is dead on to feelings I have had and the other is a bit spoilery but my favorite.
“I feel like I’m broken—like I don’t fit together anymore. Like there’s no more room for me in the world or something. Like I’ve overstayed my welcome here on Earth, and everyone’s trying to give me hints about that constantly. Like I should just check out.”
 
 

 

“My life will get better? You really believe that?" I ask. “It can. If you’re willing to do the work.”“What work?”“Not letting the world destroy you. That’s a daily battle.”

 

Personally I'm happy to say that it isn't a daily battle for me anymore.  I really hope people reach the point, but even if they aren't there, I hope people still do the work.

 

(show spoiler)