Book Review for To Pieces, a Novel about Teenage Bipolar by Kati Rocky

A Book Review of a Kati Rocky’s YA book about bipolar disorder by a teen reader who has bipolar disorder in his family.

To Pieces by Kati Rocky is a Great Book to Help People Understand Bipolar Disorder,  Especially for Teenagers.


by David Fast

David Fast is 16 and goes to high school in Portland, Oregon.  He grew up learning about bipolar disorder from his aunt, the bipolar disorder author Julie A. Fast.  The following is his review of the book To Pieces by Kati Rocky.


‘To Pieces’, a novel by Kati Rocky offers an amazing view into the mind of someone with bipolar disorder. The book is from the perspective of a teen girl named Jane who seems to have a normal, average life. This all changes when one day she goes into a downswing, making her depressed. Her sister makes her get help from a psychiatrist and she takes antidepressants. She then has a full on manic episode and needs extreme help.

This book is a good reading opportunity for those who want to understand bipolar, to know what it is like from the inside of someone with the disorder. Rothy gives us the thoughts of Jane, when she is in different mood swings and stable, with vivid examples of how different someone can be from their “true self” as Jane thinks. Jane experiences downswings, upswings, risks from certain medications, hospitalization, recovery, and tells the reader how these unfortunate but all too real situations affect her own personal life. Through the mind of Jane, people without bipolar can better understand, and those with bipolar  can better understand themselves. ‘To Pieces’ is a great bipolar book, especially for teens.

‘To Pieces’ from Tempus Press is available on 

About Kati Rocky

A note from Julie A. Fast. I recently interviewed Kati about To Pieces.   I will write more about her work in the future. Please contact David on Instagram @NorthwestOutlaw and let him know that you enjoyed his review. We starting talking about my bipolar disorder when he was four years old. He is not scared of the illness and we often talk about the signs he needs to look for in himself as he gets older.  If he says that To Pieces is a realistic depiction of a teen with bipolar, I believe him! I see him as an expert on the topic. Below is a question from my interview with Kati. I promise to add more soon.

Kati, Have you heard from kids with bipolar who have read the book? 

I have heard from kids – and adults – who have bipolar disorder and they have unanimously told me that they found Jane and her experience one hundred percent authentic and realistic. One reader told me that he got goosebumps during some of the portions of the book because it reminded him so much of his experiences. Another reader told me that she had to take a break from the depression section of the book and come back to it because it was digging up memories that were painful for her. There was a fifteen-year-old girl who told me that even though she doesn’t have bipolar disorder she felt close to Jane. She is on medication for a severe anxiety disorder and this gave her a lot of perspective into Jane and into some of the situations she got herself into. 

Check back to the blog for my interview with Kati Rocky.   You can visit her on Twitter @KatiRocky.

Kati recently wrote more about her writing process on the Gum on My Shoe Website.

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