Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson

Publisher:  Penguin Group
Publish Date:  Feb. 23, 2010
ISBN:  978-0-670-01110-0
Pages:  288
Cover Design:  Natalie C. Sousa

Lia and Cassie are high school Seniors and up until recently they were bff's.  When they were little they made a pact to be the skinniest girls in school...and they've kept it.

Now Cassie is dead and Lia is seeing her ghost everywhere.  Lia is a Wintergirl.  She's not fully alive and not yet dead.  She's slowly starving herself to death and Cassie is waiting for her.  Lia has all the tricks down pat:  sewing quarters into her weigh-in clothes, eating with the family and then sneaking in a few hours on the stairmaster - there's plenty of ways to stay a Wintergirl.

This is a disturbing and touching story of illness and recovery.  Everyone should read this - male/female, young/old, everyone.  Laurie Halse Anderson tackles issues that no one else wants to and she does it in a sensitive manner with great characters.

I think the two things that really got to me were that Lia constantly calculated calories as she looked at or thought about eating food and the messages that she would read on the websites.  The messages made me want to help these girls, no one should live that way.  After reading this book, I said a thank you to whichever diety is in charge of teenage girls, that my daughter eats in a healthy manner and has good self-esteem.

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