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Sometimes, we all wish we could hide from the world.

For Charlie, anxiety makes that happen more often than for most.

As he turns fifteen, maybe he wishes just a little too hard...

Now, with the help of his lifelong friend, Nora, he needs to find out what that means.

"...a story of the best kind of friendship and family; their trust and belief in each other turn even the freakiest of challenges into a shared adventure"





Anxiety is real and it can range from mild to debilitating. The frustration is that it is an invisible struggle.  Someone battling anxiety can appear completely together and fine, meaning it is often dismissed as nothing serious and the person just needs to "calm down." There's nothing worse that being told to calm down when anxiety strikes. It can be even worse when it's a child as society finds it hard to believe a child could suffer from true anxiety. But they can. And they need to be acknowledged, they need to know they are seen and that we recognize the struggle, the fear is very, very real.

Here are two links to resources regarding anxiety in teens. I have no connection to either of them, except that techniques listed in the first one are used by the Charlie in the novel, and the second one is connected to a book that was very helpful for both myself and our son. I share them in the hope that others might find something of value for themselves. 


Dr. Edward Plimpton, PhD 

"This is an easy to read book appropriate for young adults, about a 15-year-old boy with social phobia and other forms of anxiety. As a psychologist who specializes in treating anxious children, I read a lot of memoirs and novels that describe anxiety. In general, I find it is not so easy to write about the experience of anxiety because it can involve a repetition of the same old worries over and over again. In Hidden, Melissa Volker does justice to the complex relationship individuals can have to their anxiety with the selective use of magical realism. This simple technique allows for an exploration of the complex relationship someone can have to their anxious habits and symptoms. And the author's use of magical realism also helps capture some of the magical thinking that is characteristic of the anxious mind. So I found this book a very accessible book that none the less captured some of the complexities of the anxious mind in a rather thought-provoking manner"

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