A doctor with childhood trauma recounts his experiences with the mental health system through his friendships.
At the age of nine, Gabriel “Gabe” Guzman (a.k.a. George Garrison) must move in with his grandparents after a tragedy leaves him parentless. His grandparents live in the countryside of South Florida, in a little area he nicknames World’s End. There, he meets the feisty and intelligent Cat, whom he instantly falls for, and the brother and sister duo, Samantha and Samuel. Gabe finds a life-long kinship in the trio who soon help him come out of his shell and get through the other side of adolescence.
But all good things come to an end, and the pack breaks when Samantha’s father finds out she has been dating J. Lee, a Black boy. After a series of misfortunes, Gabe must return to live with his foster parents in New York—where he was born. He exchanges letters with Cat through the years but loses touch with her during their time in medical school.
After a terrible storm hits World’s End, Gabe returns to check out his grandparents’ house only to unexpectedly find Cat, Samantha, and J. Lee in a world turned upside down—a world that will never be the same.
Intelligent, earnest, and infused with Cuban culture, The Benefits of Insanity is a story of love, friendship, and resilience in the face of a society that fails those suffering from trauma and mental illness.