Title: Wintergirls
Author: Laurie Halse Anderson
Genre: Young Adult, Realistic Fiction
Publisher: Viking Juvenile
Publication Date: March 19, 2009

     Lia and Cassie are best friends, wintergirls frozen in matchstick bodies, competitors in a deadly contest to see who can be the skinniest. But what comes after size zero and size double-zero? When Cassie succumbs to the demons within, Lia feels she is being haunted by her friend’s restless spirit.

     In her most emotionally wrenching, lyrically written book since the multiple-award-winning Speak, Laurie Halse Anderson explores Lia’s descent into the powerful vortex of anorexia, and her painful path toward recovery.

Lia fights a war every single day. A war with herself.

Anorexia is a silent and very deadly disease that many people suffer. Laurie Anderson does not sugarcoat Lia's struggle at all. When Lia stared at her body, disgusted with the imaginary fat pockets her mind conjured, Laurie used almost poetic imagery to describe in great detail what Lia sees. I felt nothing but depressive emotions when I read this book. I nearly cried multiple times, and vary rarely does a book cause me an emotional roller coaster like this one.

This book was spectacular in the way the author tackled on the sensitive subject of eating disorders without being too preachy in describing the horrors.

There was only one complaint I had about the novel. I found the strikeouts throughout the book a little on the distracting side. Also, when Lia started her hallucinations with the ghost of Cassie, the line between reality and imagination seemed to be a little hazy.

I highly recommend this novel to everyone, especially to increase awareness of eating disorders and how it can affect a close friend.

Rating: Four out of Five stars

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