As someone who suffers with OCD, I was intrigued and excited to get stuck into Lisa Thompson’s debut novel The Goldfish Boy.
12-year-old Matthew Corbin suffers from severe Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, which limits his existence to the four walls of two rooms in his house; watching the world through the window like a goldfish in a bowl. He spends his time making notes of his observations about his neighbours’ everyday routines, excessively cleaning and avoiding the ‘ten-plus-three’ number.
When a toddler staying next door goes missing, Matthew realises he was the last person to witness him alive. He finds himself at the centre of the young boy’s mysterious disappearance, as his observant eye offers the key to discovering what happened, even though this means exposing his own secrets and facing his fears.
Whilst reading this book, as it centred around a child’s mental health, it made me think back to my first experiences with OCD as a child, and how I could relate to Matthew’s fears, his parents’ reaction and his peers’ attitudes towards him.
This beautifully written, insightful and inspiring novel invokes many emotions and thoroughly educates the reader on this variation of the condition. I read it within two days, and I would happily recommend it to anyone.