So, I’ve had some really good points (all similar) brought up in recent reviews and PMs for Alone in a Crowded Room, mostly concerning Peeta’s symptoms, and I’m just going to babble about them. Maybe answer some questions/shed some light on things in the process.
There’s stages to healing from a traumatic brain injury, and when people pass through them depends on the indivudal injury, their symptoms, etc. Peeta is still somewhat stuck in the first stage. Much of what he will have to contend with both physically and psychologically has yet to actually surface. He’s still finding his way out of the post-injury fog. He has very little interaction with the world at large, and very little stimuli to trigger anything beyond the numb fog he’s still living in.
The healing process is also anything but linear for most people. There’s setbacks, there’s relapses, but all of that is actually progress, whether it looks like it or not. It’s all part of what the brain goes through as it attempts to repair itself. It’s also a process that never actually ends. With the severity of Peeta’s injury, he’ll be recovering his entire life. While this has the bright side of “oh, he’ll always be getting better” it also has the downside of “oh, he’ll always be struggling”.
In other words, I am kind of trying to warn you guys shit’s going to go downhill for the guy for a bit. There’s going to be a point where completely new issues present themselves. There’s going to be a few points where he seems to backslide horribly. There’s going to be times when you probably hate my husband and I for what Peet goes through on the daily. I kind of want to be more specific but I’m not sure how without being spoilery, and I’d rather not do that in “public”. If you really want spoilers, PM/ask/fanmail/whatever me or my husband, we’ll totally discuss. Most of the story is done, as I’ve said before, so we know what’s coming.
We’re also more than happy to talk about brain injuries in general, if anyone wants to learn more or understand things a bit better. I’ll probably do more rambly posts like this in the future as specific things come up. If the subject does interest you, the wiki article on TBIs is ridiculously dry but has some good information, this mayoclinic article is horribly formatted but easier to read, and there is also some concise, excellent information as to how TBIs affect communication and cognitive abilities here.