Mariel Hemingway is the granddaughter of famous novelist Ernest Hemingway. While Ernest Hemingway is known for his wonderful writing, he is also known for how he left this world: he put a double-barreled shotgun to his own head.
In fact, Mariel Hemingway has seen troubled lives throughout her family. Her own sister, Margaux, also took her own life. Mental illness, depression and other factors have colored the Hemingway legacy for generations.
Now Mariel Hemingway is talking about it. She has penned two books on the subjects of depression, mental illness, and suicide. One is a young-adult version called Invisible Girl.
Her publisher says:
Born just a few months after her grandfather, Ernest Hemingway, shot himself, it was Mariel’s mission as a girl to escape the desperate cycles of severe mental health issues that had plagued generations of her family. Surrounded by a family tortured by alcoholism (both parents), depression (her sister Margaux), suicide (her grandfather and four other members of her family), schizophrenia (her sister Muffet), and cancer (mother), it was all the young Mariel could do to keep her head… Young readers who are sharing a similar painful childhood will see their lives and questions reflected on the pages of her diary—and they may even be inspired to start their own diary to channel their pain. Her voice will speak directly to teens across the world and tell them there is light at the end of the tunnel.
Mariel Hemingway says that she feels a unique opportunity to talk about these issues of depression and suicide.
“I am a Hemingway, and to me, that means that I have a ticket to understanding a world of darkness, of courage, of sadness, of excitement, and — at times — of complete lunacy. And yet, other people with other names feel these things too. It may just be that they don’t have an American myth to which they can connect themselves.”
When asked why she did a young-adult version of this book about depression and suicide, Mariel Hemingway said:
“Because that’s (the age) when I was the most scared. Also when I was the most confused. A lot of kids don’t know that there’s somebody out there that gets it. You don’t know it’s not normal. I thought that when parents fought and there was broken glass and blood on the wall, that you cleaned it up because this was your job.”