Author, Actor, Teacher, Trouble

YA author of DON'T TOUCH, my debut novel out from HarperTeen September 2, 2014. WHAT?

Here I collect inspirations, obsessions, and fever dreams ... Peruse at your own risk. And check out the menu for secrets and project-specific dreamings.
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Dark Faerie Carnival Tour »http://darkfaerietales.com/fall-carnival-game-boys-monsters-rachel-wilson.html

I’m playing a fun game over at the Dark Faerie Carnival Tour in celebration of the impending release of “The Game of Boys and Monsters.”

Is Ansel Elgort more of a vampire or a werewolf? Stop by and weigh in …

erikadprice:

On Sunday, I whipped through the entirety of rachelmwilson's new YA novel, Don’t Touch, published by HarperTeen. And since this is such a substantial and meaty young adult novel (clocking in at 432 pages), that is definitely saying something. 
Full disclosure: I know Rachel in real life, and I admire her a lot. 
Don’t Touch follows anxious high school student Caddie Finn as she navigates two major life changes: attending a new school (an arts academy, where she’ll be pursuing acting), and dealing with the emotional fallout of her parents’ recent separation. Caddie has a history of panic attacks, ritualized coping behaviors, and magical thinking — all OCD symptoms — and when her father moves out, they come back with a vengeance. This time, Caddie becomes convinced that if she touches another person’s skin — anyone at all, for any amount of time — her father will be gone for good. 
Caddie copes with her new compulsion by wearing long sleeves and jeans, even in the stifling Alabama summer, jumping away in fear the moment a person approaches her body, and oh yeah…wearing elbow-length lavender gloves. Every day. For months. 
The book dives into Caddie’s high school transition and her coping with mental illness pretty quickly; the entire plot of the book moves at a nice, steady clip without ever feeling rushed or belabored, which I really appreciated. 
The reader is quickly introduced to Caddie’s new classmates, all of whom are actors in her program: there’s Mandy, her long-lost childhood friend; Drew, Mandy’s meat-headed boyfriend; Peter, the astoundingly patient and understanding love interest who can also act the hell out of Hamlet; Livia & Hank, the quirky, platonic couple consisting of a gay boy and a straight (?) girl; and Oscar, the sexually harassing, loud mouthed former child actor. 
Caddie’s new school is putting on a production of Hamlet, and Caddie desperately wants to play the role of Ophelia. But when she gets the role and her crush Peter gets Hamlet (don’t worry, this happens fairly early in the book), her “don’t touch" rule becomes a lot more difficult to maintain. And to hide from others. 
I won’t go any further into the plot, but let’s just say this book explores numerous interesting conflicts. First there’s Caddie’s attempts to overcome her own mental illness. Then there’s her fraught relationship with her absent father, and her parents’ crumbling marriage. There’s Caddie (and all the other students’) stress over putting on the best possible play. There’s Caddie’s frantic, deeply misguided attempts to conceal her OCD from everyone in her life, which constantly places her acting career and her friendships at risk. And finally, there’s Caddie’s internal struggle over her deep attraction to Peter, and her conflicted desire to break the don’t touch rule. 
This book has a lot of ideas to juggle, and it does so expertly. Did I mention that it also gets really in depth about what attending an acting high school is like, and seriously grapples with Shakespeare? Yeah. This is not a fluffy YA read. It’s got a lot for the reader to chew on, even if they’re not the typical romance/YA reader. 
Don’t Touch isn’t, after all, a romance. It’s an informative, literary tale about overcoming OCD and learning to accept help from friends (and yes, from mental health professionals). That the book also paints such reasonable, accurate portraits of adolescent relationships is just a fantastic bonus. Nothing is fantastical or problematic here — we witness fights and break ups and frustrations and effective communication — exactly what an adolescent reader needs to see. 
Finally, Don’t Touch ends with an amazing (and thoroughly researched) author’s note that I am certain will really help a bundle of young adults and adolescents with OCD, and tons of adults and teens with other mental illnesses, too. Rachel has mentioned in multiple interviews that she had her own experiences that were comparable (if not identical) to Caddie’s, and her firsthand experience with anxiety and panic attacks is a huge part of what makes this novel so important as a piece of fiction, and as disability and mental illness representation. 
If you like YA, novels about mental illness or invisible disabilities, books about acting, Shakespeare references, or responsible, accurate romance, Don’t Touch is 100% for you. Pick it up wherever you buy your books — Amazon, B&N, Kobo, local book stores, etc etc etc. 

I’m honored by this review from the whipsmart Erika Price, whom I know for reals.
erikadprice:

On Sunday, I whipped through the entirety of rachelmwilson's new YA novel, Don’t Touch, published by HarperTeen. And since this is such a substantial and meaty young adult novel (clocking in at 432 pages), that is definitely saying something. 
Full disclosure: I know Rachel in real life, and I admire her a lot. 
Don’t Touch follows anxious high school student Caddie Finn as she navigates two major life changes: attending a new school (an arts academy, where she’ll be pursuing acting), and dealing with the emotional fallout of her parents’ recent separation. Caddie has a history of panic attacks, ritualized coping behaviors, and magical thinking — all OCD symptoms — and when her father moves out, they come back with a vengeance. This time, Caddie becomes convinced that if she touches another person’s skin — anyone at all, for any amount of time — her father will be gone for good. 
Caddie copes with her new compulsion by wearing long sleeves and jeans, even in the stifling Alabama summer, jumping away in fear the moment a person approaches her body, and oh yeah…wearing elbow-length lavender gloves. Every day. For months. 
The book dives into Caddie’s high school transition and her coping with mental illness pretty quickly; the entire plot of the book moves at a nice, steady clip without ever feeling rushed or belabored, which I really appreciated. 
The reader is quickly introduced to Caddie’s new classmates, all of whom are actors in her program: there’s Mandy, her long-lost childhood friend; Drew, Mandy’s meat-headed boyfriend; Peter, the astoundingly patient and understanding love interest who can also act the hell out of Hamlet; Livia & Hank, the quirky, platonic couple consisting of a gay boy and a straight (?) girl; and Oscar, the sexually harassing, loud mouthed former child actor. 
Caddie’s new school is putting on a production of Hamlet, and Caddie desperately wants to play the role of Ophelia. But when she gets the role and her crush Peter gets Hamlet (don’t worry, this happens fairly early in the book), her “don’t touch" rule becomes a lot more difficult to maintain. And to hide from others. 
I won’t go any further into the plot, but let’s just say this book explores numerous interesting conflicts. First there’s Caddie’s attempts to overcome her own mental illness. Then there’s her fraught relationship with her absent father, and her parents’ crumbling marriage. There’s Caddie (and all the other students’) stress over putting on the best possible play. There’s Caddie’s frantic, deeply misguided attempts to conceal her OCD from everyone in her life, which constantly places her acting career and her friendships at risk. And finally, there’s Caddie’s internal struggle over her deep attraction to Peter, and her conflicted desire to break the don’t touch rule. 
This book has a lot of ideas to juggle, and it does so expertly. Did I mention that it also gets really in depth about what attending an acting high school is like, and seriously grapples with Shakespeare? Yeah. This is not a fluffy YA read. It’s got a lot for the reader to chew on, even if they’re not the typical romance/YA reader. 
Don’t Touch isn’t, after all, a romance. It’s an informative, literary tale about overcoming OCD and learning to accept help from friends (and yes, from mental health professionals). That the book also paints such reasonable, accurate portraits of adolescent relationships is just a fantastic bonus. Nothing is fantastical or problematic here — we witness fights and break ups and frustrations and effective communication — exactly what an adolescent reader needs to see. 
Finally, Don’t Touch ends with an amazing (and thoroughly researched) author’s note that I am certain will really help a bundle of young adults and adolescents with OCD, and tons of adults and teens with other mental illnesses, too. Rachel has mentioned in multiple interviews that she had her own experiences that were comparable (if not identical) to Caddie’s, and her firsthand experience with anxiety and panic attacks is a huge part of what makes this novel so important as a piece of fiction, and as disability and mental illness representation. 
If you like YA, novels about mental illness or invisible disabilities, books about acting, Shakespeare references, or responsible, accurate romance, Don’t Touch is 100% for you. Pick it up wherever you buy your books — Amazon, B&N, Kobo, local book stores, etc etc etc. 

I’m honored by this review from the whipsmart Erika Price, whom I know for reals.

erikadprice:

On Sunday, I whipped through the entirety of rachelmwilson's new YA novel, Don’t Touch, published by HarperTeen. And since this is such a substantial and meaty young adult novel (clocking in at 432 pages), that is definitely saying something. 

Full disclosure: I know Rachel in real life, and I admire her a lot. 

Don’t Touch follows anxious high school student Caddie Finn as she navigates two major life changes: attending a new school (an arts academy, where she’ll be pursuing acting), and dealing with the emotional fallout of her parents’ recent separation. Caddie has a history of panic attacks, ritualized coping behaviors, and magical thinking — all OCD symptoms — and when her father moves out, they come back with a vengeance. This time, Caddie becomes convinced that if she touches another person’s skin — anyone at all, for any amount of time — her father will be gone for good. 

Caddie copes with her new compulsion by wearing long sleeves and jeans, even in the stifling Alabama summer, jumping away in fear the moment a person approaches her body, and oh yeah…wearing elbow-length lavender gloves. Every day. For months. 

The book dives into Caddie’s high school transition and her coping with mental illness pretty quickly; the entire plot of the book moves at a nice, steady clip without ever feeling rushed or belabored, which I really appreciated. 

The reader is quickly introduced to Caddie’s new classmates, all of whom are actors in her program: there’s Mandy, her long-lost childhood friend; Drew, Mandy’s meat-headed boyfriend; Peter, the astoundingly patient and understanding love interest who can also act the hell out of Hamlet; Livia & Hank, the quirky, platonic couple consisting of a gay boy and a straight (?) girl; and Oscar, the sexually harassing, loud mouthed former child actor. 

Caddie’s new school is putting on a production of Hamlet, and Caddie desperately wants to play the role of Ophelia. But when she gets the role and her crush Peter gets Hamlet (don’t worry, this happens fairly early in the book), her “don’t touch" rule becomes a lot more difficult to maintain. And to hide from others. 

I won’t go any further into the plot, but let’s just say this book explores numerous interesting conflicts. First there’s Caddie’s attempts to overcome her own mental illness. Then there’s her fraught relationship with her absent father, and her parents’ crumbling marriage. There’s Caddie (and all the other students’) stress over putting on the best possible play. There’s Caddie’s frantic, deeply misguided attempts to conceal her OCD from everyone in her life, which constantly places her acting career and her friendships at risk. And finally, there’s Caddie’s internal struggle over her deep attraction to Peter, and her conflicted desire to break the don’t touch rule. 

This book has a lot of ideas to juggle, and it does so expertly. Did I mention that it also gets really in depth about what attending an acting high school is like, and seriously grapples with Shakespeare? Yeah. This is not a fluffy YA read. It’s got a lot for the reader to chew on, even if they’re not the typical romance/YA reader. 

Don’t Touch isn’t, after all, a romance. It’s an informative, literary tale about overcoming OCD and learning to accept help from friends (and yes, from mental health professionals). That the book also paints such reasonable, accurate portraits of adolescent relationships is just a fantastic bonus. Nothing is fantastical or problematic here — we witness fights and break ups and frustrations and effective communication — exactly what an adolescent reader needs to see. 

Finally, Don’t Touch ends with an amazing (and thoroughly researched) author’s note that I am certain will really help a bundle of young adults and adolescents with OCD, and tons of adults and teens with other mental illnesses, too. Rachel has mentioned in multiple interviews that she had her own experiences that were comparable (if not identical) to Caddie’s, and her firsthand experience with anxiety and panic attacks is a huge part of what makes this novel so important as a piece of fiction, and as disability and mental illness representation. 

If you like YA, novels about mental illness or invisible disabilities, books about acting, Shakespeare references, or responsible, accurate romance, Don’t Touch is 100% for you. Pick it up wherever you buy your books — Amazon, B&N, Kobo, local book stores, etc etc etc. 

I’m honored by this review from the whipsmart Erika Price, whom I know for reals.

The Official DON’T TOUCH Book Trailer Is Here!!!

DIrected by Matt Miller, starring Mia Hulen and Brando Crawford, and with amazing music by Christian Moder and vocals by Katie Todd

fashion-by-the-book:

Don’t Touch by Rachel M. Wilson 

Genre- Young Adult

Publisher- Harper Teen

Release Date- September 2nd 2014

Rating-

I received a copy of this book in exchanged for a honest review. In no way did the author or publishing company influence my review. For info on my book reviews and rating scale, click here



Let’s use a John Green quote to sum my love of this book up “Sometimes, you read a book and it fills you with this weird evangelical zeal, and you become convinced that the shattered world will never be put back together unless and until all living humans read the book.”

(I’m probably freaking the author out right now with my love of this book, but this is my job so…) I really, really loved this book. Whenever I have contact with an author, I always panic a little about if I didn’t like the book, what would I say? Thankfully, I didn’t have this problem here. Maybe the opposite, since I really liked it. Let’s get down to the basic of why: I have anxiety issues. I don’t talk about it much here because I try to be professional (as you can tell from my obsessive use of David Tennant gifs…) but I do, and this book seemed to really get anxiety, how when you know what you’re doing doesn’t make sense but you keep doing it because you afraid not to.

Caddie has rules. Don’t blink unless you want to crash, keep holding your breath, don’t touch anyone or dad won’t come back. She’s always had anxiety, but since her parents separated and her dad practically left her life, it’s gotten worse. She’s afraid to touch anyone, wearing long sleeves and scarves in the south’s summer heat. When she starts school as a Art-based high school, she quickly gains friends, including an old one, Mandy, and is cast in her dream role in Hamlet. But her fear gets in her way, stopping her from touching anyone, even Peter, the possibly crazy but still cute boy who likes her.

Oh, Caddie. Poor baby! She’s the kind of character you want to shield away from the world and make her hot chocolate and never let her get hurt. (also, props to a main character who I actually like!) And her friends; I seriously loved her friends. They were quirky and funny and cool and realistic. And her school sounded so amazing. I’ve always wished there was a school like that near me (I love homeschooling, but a school with possible fashion and writing programs wins!)

And PETER. Man, I loved him. I loved how he’s part of the reason she slowly came out of her fears, and I loved how their relationship progressed. Caddie and Peter worked well together, I hate when couples in books are weird, with one being perfect and the other not-so-much, or when one is life-like and the other is flat. They were both realistic and equal.

The issues in this book are handled beautifully. It’s hard to write about a subject that affects so many, but Wilson does it well. The writing itself is lovely and tells the story clearly. And I loved that they were doing Hamlet. Ophelia’s story had always interested me, and I liked seeing Caddie’s view of it.

I’m trying to think of any problems I had with this book… hmmm… With great characters, plot, and writing, it’s hard to think of any. You know how some people treat Perks of Being A Wallflower like the best book ever to be written, because they can relate to Charlie and his life? I can relate to Caddie’s, so this is like my own perks. I guess I would have liked to know a bit more about Mandy, she seemed so interesting.

Anyways, read this book if you ever feel alone because of a inner issue, or if you love Laurie Halse Anderson’s Wintergirls, Speak, ect. (sorry this review is all over the place!)

Watch out for a giveaway inspired by Don’t Touch!

Anonymous asked:
do you know any good ya books where the protagonist has ocd? Preferably where it's not portrayed as a joke ? Thanks :)
Rachel M. Wilson

The recently released Don’t Touch by Rachel M. Wilson has come highly recommended to me by several friends with OCD. We interviewed the author last month and will feature a review later this year. 

We have several other books featuring characters with OCD listed on our Goodreads account: https://www.goodreads.com/review/list/22364883?shelf=ocd

However, the only book of those we’ve reviewed on Disability in Kidlit is Say What You Will by Cammie McGovern. I haven’t heard anything about how well the condition is portrayed in the other books—anyone with OCD want to chip in?

herreracus:

Eagerly awaiting the release of FAT & BONES by Larissa Theule. I’ve had the extreme pleasure of reading one of the stories in my first ever VCFA workshop and it was fantastic. Can’t wait to read all the other stories!

Me. Too! I want to give it to all the small children I know, knowing their parents will love it too.
herreracus:

Eagerly awaiting the release of FAT & BONES by Larissa Theule. I’ve had the extreme pleasure of reading one of the stories in my first ever VCFA workshop and it was fantastic. Can’t wait to read all the other stories!

Me. Too! I want to give it to all the small children I know, knowing their parents will love it too.
herreracus:

Eagerly awaiting the release of FAT & BONES by Larissa Theule. I’ve had the extreme pleasure of reading one of the stories in my first ever VCFA workshop and it was fantastic. Can’t wait to read all the other stories!

Me. Too! I want to give it to all the small children I know, knowing their parents will love it too.

herreracus:

Eagerly awaiting the release of FAT & BONES by Larissa Theule. I’ve had the extreme pleasure of reading one of the stories in my first ever VCFA workshop and it was fantastic. Can’t wait to read all the other stories!

Me. Too! I want to give it to all the small children I know, knowing their parents will love it too.

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