Paige Masters knows something isn’t right, but figures once she gets to college and away from her podunk town, things inside her head will quiet down. Instead, during her first Philosophy lecture she hears voices telling her to kill herself.
In an impulsive attempt to stop the noise and get some sleep, Paige overdoses on her roommate’s Ambien, her ticket to the campus ER. An attempted escape puts her on a 72-hour-hold at Orange Adolescent Psychiatric followed by a six week stay. Stunned by her diagnosis of bipolar disorder with psychotic features, she’s afraid she will never get out of 3North. When she turns 18, she discovers all she has to do is ask, and she can leave. She is ill-prepared for what comes next.
"With canny language and the authority of a parent’s experience, Jamie Weil’s FIRST BREAK captures chills and spills on the broken roller coaster of manic depression. Her protagonist, Paige, begins to unravel the summer before college and the young woman's chaotic, heartbreaking, and redemptive journey to gain control of her life is as insightful as it is thrilling."
~ Charlie Price Winner of the 2011 Edgar for Best Young Adult Mystery and numerous award-winning YA novels.
"Paige's experiences with mental illness are painful, honest, and raw. Hers is an important story for a society with a mental illness crisis among teens. When I started the book, my eyes were opened. By the time I finished it, my heart was opened, too."
~ Lois Sepahban Award-winning author of multiple nonfiction books and debut novel, Paper Wishes, Margaret Ferguson Books (FSG imprint).
A docuseries and movement that will change youth mental health
The intention of this docuseries is that viewers become keenly aware of the high stakes of moving too slowly with early intervention. Effective early intervention saves lives. Viewers will see a clear plan to move forward, one that is filled with hope, inspiration, and resolve. Through stories of cutting edge research, stories about what has worked for others with lived experience, and a look at a large variety of healing modalities not typically offered in the doctor’s office, viewers will find inspiration. From grass roots movements to peer models, the film will break down the silos all operating individually, and draw a recovery narrative through the series.