Self-deprecating humor abounds in this debut novel about the depression and anxiety of 16-year-old James Whitman. His mental health struggles are exacerbated by living with abusive parents and agonizing over why his older sister was thrown out of the house. James finds comfort in poetry and seeks advice and emotional solace from Dr. Bird, an imaginary pigeon therapist. He is aware of the gravity of his situation, but friendships, along with his growing interest in his own poetry and photography, help James gain confidence and understanding. He tries to figure out how it’s possible to survive; even when parents and teachers do everything they can to make him feel crazy.