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2.98  ·  Rating Details ·  787 Ratings  ·  139 Reviews
After her father’s death, twenty-six-year-old Gray Lachmann findsherself compulsively eating. Desperate to stop bingeing, she abandonsher life in New York City for a job at a southern weight-losscamp. There, caught among the warring egos of her devious co-counselor,Sheena; the self-aggrandizing camp director, Lewis; his attractive assistant,Bennett; and a throng of combati ...more
Paperback, 368 pages
Published April 26th 2011 by Harper Perennial (first published April 13th 2011)
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(showing 1-30)
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Apr 30, 2011 TinaB rated it did not like it
I chose to review this novel due to the witty write-up on the back cover and the promise of wicked funny laughs. I wanted to read about this girl who was suffering from grief and eating her sorrow and see how she overcame emotional eating. What I got was a girl who ate like an out of control pig (Specher's idea of fat people diet) for an entire year, yet only gained 15 pounds. I watched this girl go to fat camp with untrained professionals to council teens and overnight- watched her trade binge ...more
May 22, 2011 Kasey rated it it was ok
This book was alright. All about fat camp which I always find entertaining and I thought it might be similar to one of my fav abc family shows Huge, which was devastatingly cancelled. However, it was not. Not a single character was likeable especially the main character. She was so annoying and most of the time I just wanted her to get over it. Her father died of a heartattack and she blames herself even though he was morbidly obese. Clearly she didn't kill her father even if he didn't approve o ...more
Beverly Diehl
This book was picked by my Chick Lit Readers group. I'm not alone in saying I found it very disappointing. The cover and blurb made it sound very interesting, but in the end... The plot wasn't one, the main character was an unlikeable, self-absorbed bitch who really didn't seem to grow or learn anything throughout the course of the novel.

Gray signs up to be a fat camp counselor because she wants to get close to a girl she thinks is her half-sister, then pretty much ignores this troubled teen so
Christine Kuchinsky
Sep 18, 2011 Christine Kuchinsky rated it it was ok
I'm not sure what to say about this. I did not find the main character, Gray, wholly likeable, which I suppose is not that important, as there have been plenty of anti-heroes in literature, but Gray, while confused and struggling, is also incredibly shallow and selfish. The story builds up the stories of various girls at a weight loss camp, but then never offers any real resolution - in fact, it really drops the story line like a hot potato when Gray moves elsewhere. The story starts by focusing ...more
Aug 10, 2011 Michelle rated it it was amazing
Skinny is Diana Spechler’s second novel after Who by Fire, and let’s end the suspense: there is no sophomore slump here.

Gray Lachmann feels responsible for her father’s sudden death and tries to eat away her pain and guilt. In the meantime, via her father’s will, Gray discovers she has an illegitimate half-sister, so she does what any reasonable 26-year-old, slightly overweight girl who recently lost her father would do: she tracks down her half-sister through her blog and finds out she’s going
Feb 26, 2012 Labrot rated it really liked it
This author takes the complexity of what it means to be skinny and fat and crafts a raw, very relatable story around it. She says the things we only think. We're taken on a journey of dark thoughts and true implications. There's nothing predictable about the story she tells. Anyone that's been there should read this because it won't make you feel bad, this isn't a self help book or a pity party. She starts off fat but when and how she drops weight, is very real. I lost weight reading this book o ...more
May 01, 2011 Tamar rated it liked it
Um I really had to watch myself reading this book. Not only did what the narrator have to say piss me off over and over, but parts of the food binging and gross self-evaluation resonated with me so much that I pissed myself off for seeing similarities!!! This is the most irritating narrator I've met in a long time. I'm not sure if it's valuable to be confronted with these things or if novels like this just reinforce cultural views and norms that are fucked up and help to form women like the narr ...more
Dana E
Jun 04, 2011 Dana E rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this book! Diana Spechler is such a unique, witty, smart writer who has crafted a complex story that doesn't really let anyone off the hook. Though maybe I didn't always like Gray, the narrator, I realized that for me, what I didn't like about her were actually the moments when I totally related to her and realized she was boldly stating things that I connected to, but was ashamed to admit. This novel addresses some deep, thought-provoking issues about the ways women use food ...more
Aug 26, 2012 Jamie rated it really liked it

Parts of this book felt very predictable, which doesn't necessarily mean bad. But the last few chapters picked up and it ended in a much different place than I expected. Overall, it was a good quick read and definitely worth the 99 cents that I paid for it!
Jul 04, 2011 Danielle rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Twenty-six year old Gray is beautiful, intelligent and thin…at least to the outside world. For as long as she’s know she’s counted calories, cut meals in half, hardly ever ordered desert and has constantly been mindful of the things she puts in her mouth. After her father’s death and subsequent discovery of a half-sister, Eden, she never knew existed she’s thrown it all out the window gorging herself on whatever falls within her sites. To overcome her inner-demons and hopefully connect with a pi ...more
Mar 06, 2011 Danielle rated it really liked it
Twenty-six year old Gray is beautiful, intelligent and thin…at least to the outside world. For as long as she’s know she’s counted calories, cut meals in half, hardly ever ordered desert and has constantly been mindful of the things she puts in her mouth. After her father’s death and subsequent discovery of a half-sister, Eden, she never knew existed she’s thrown it all out the window gorging herself on whatever falls within her sites. To overcome her inner-demons and hopefully connect with a pi ...more
H. Shar
Jun 25, 2011 H. Shar rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: people who have nothing better to do
Shelves: depressing
rating: 2 stars

I kinda regret purchasing this book. I wish I could return it somehow, but oh well. The idea behind it was great. Exploring the connection between emotions and eating and how our body's impulses reflect our hidden thoughts and desires. I got into the book right away after I read the first few chapters and bought it. But then I got out of it quickly. The main character, Gray, alienated me with her thoughts and her actions. I couldn't sympathize with her. I couldn't connect with her
Mar 27, 2011 Jlaurenmc rated it really liked it
Gray Lachmann is a fabulously flawed main character whose story jumps off the page in Diana Spechler's new novel Skinny. Although some have billed it as a young adult novel, Gray herself is 27 years old. After her father dies, she spirals off the deep end, giving up everything important in her life in a quest to squelch her guilt. Because, of course, she claims to have killed him.

Gray has a successful business booking and selling tickets at comedy clubs, a career she embarked upon after meeting
May 24, 2011 Nicole rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I received a digital copy for review from NetGalley. I really, really wanted to like this book, but was unable to find anything about the book that I liked personally which was very disappointing. The premise sounded both interesting and witty and it was a topic that I have never really read about before. From the moment we are introduced to the main character, she lacks any kind of personality and comes across as unbelievably whiny and self-absorbed.

It’s not very often that after I have read a
Jun 01, 2011 Emily rated it liked it
I thought this might be a story about women, weight, and self-esteem, but instead it seems to be about grief, loss, and control. Throughout the story, I could see what would not happen, but couldn't predict what would. In the end, it felt as though very little was resolved, although Gray seemed ready to go on to the next section of her life. Each character had his or her own story line, and was discarded at the end of it. I felt like I didn't really understand the book, but perhaps that is the d ...more
May 31, 2012 Riona rated it it was ok
Picked up this novel looking for a good work of fiction concerning eating disorders. Unfortunately, this was not exactly what I had hoped for, though I wouldn't deem it a failure as a novel.

Spechler's writing is clever and mildly entertaining at the best of times but somewhat catty and juvenile in a very unfortunate way. Too many jokes were made at the expense of fat people, and that is saying a lot. However I was pleased and satisfied with the *twist* ending. It was well written and tied everyt
Jul 09, 2014 Katrid rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed reading this book. Perhaps it's more relevant to me than it is to some who read it, but this is just that TYPE of book: a book that seems to only appeal to readers in which the content is currently relevant to them. SPOILER ALERT: yes, the book seems to have "fat-bashing". Those who are overly-sensitive to words will be hurt immediately. But you really have to step out of yourself when you read this book and try and grasp the real issues: that we all have deep seeded issues. I l ...more
Apr 06, 2011 Karen rated it it was ok
Shelves: galley
After becoming a binge eater after the sudden death of her father, Gray impulsively decides to go work at a fat camp after learning her father had a secret. Spechler has a wonderful way with words - she's so descriptive, putting the reader right there in the story. Unfortunately, I didn't want to have anything to do with this story. There was not one character in the whole book with any redeeming qualities whatsoever, especially Gray. Spechler's turn of a phrase is the only thing that kept me in ...more
Taegan Shields
Apr 14, 2013 Taegan Shields rated it it was ok
This novel was intriguing in the beginning; it held my interest well for the first half of the book. Then it turned from a unique story into a bland teen-drama almost romance-novel-esque . The ending was the worst part. There were absolutely no redeeming qualities.
While I'll admit that the book was good in the beginning (which is why it got two stars instead of one), the last half of the book completely ruined it. I would not recommend this book to anyone.
Jen Twedt
Apr 23, 2012 Jen Twedt rated it it was ok

I debated between a one star and a three star rating. One star for the unbelievable nature of the highly expensive yet unprofessional camp and for a general lack of displaying any good eating habits. Three stars for the insightful crazy head trip women can have over their weight and appearance. This is a very fast read; not the worst I've read but certainly not the best.
Aug 05, 2012 Julia rated it did not like it
I'm a sucker for body issue books but this just became torturous. I don't even know what to say. The characters, while some were developed-ish, were just unlikable and bordering on disgusting. Maybe I'll just stick to non-fiction for awhile...
Sep 07, 2011 Trisha rated it it was ok
Shelves: drama
An ok novel, nothing exciting, a little melodramatic and unrealistic at times, the main character seemed to have the maturity level of the teenage girls that she was fake counseling. Overall, an easily forgettable novel.
Janis Nielsen
May 20, 2012 Janis Nielsen rated it it was ok
Depressing, and is all about the affair the woman has with the camp counselor.
Mar 16, 2013 Barbara rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction
Intensely disliked the main character. Wasn't too fond of the others either. Made it hard to like the book.
Tiffany Maines
Aug 02, 2012 Tiffany Maines rated it did not like it
Somehow managed to make a summer romance starring a binge eater into a boring agonizing melodrama. I'm all for cheesy chick books... But I couldn't even make myself finish reading it.
Mar 19, 2013 Marcy rated it did not like it
This book was awful.... Enough said
Nov 07, 2014 Sarah rated it it was ok
1.5 and I am only this generous because I have an affinity for books about body image and food.
Jessica Lawlor
Jun 02, 2011 Jessica Lawlor rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2011
After her father’s death, Gray is struggling: mentally, emotionally and definitely physically. Gray finds comfort in food and begins compulsively eating. She quickly packs on the pounds and slowly spins into a depression like she’s never felt before. With a desire to get back to her old self and get away from it all, Gray applies for a job as a camp counselor at a southern weight loss camp. At camp, Gray meets a cast of characters from Eden, her mysterious possible half-sister to sexy Bennett, w ...more
Apr 20, 2011 Clementine rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, 2011
Compulsively overeating after her father’s death, Gray Lachmann uproots from her life in New York City for a job as a counselor at a weight-loss camp in the south. Fueled partly by her desire to stop overeating and partly by a pull to get to know the half-sister she never knew she had, Gray encounters a variety of characters at the camp. While she deals with her insatiable hunger and sea of lies her father left in his wake, Gray also starts to discover herself.

This is Spechler’s second novel, an
Jul 08, 2011 Megan rated it really liked it
When I entered a contest and agreed to participate in an author discussion, I didn’t know what I was getting myself into with SKINNY. I thought I would be getting a book about one woman’s acceptance of herself. I rarely read into details about things and this has often led me down weird paths with books. SKINNY was kind of a discussion about acceptance and body image, but more so about grief, blame, and realizations about one’s self and one’s life. Gray is a 26 year old (note: I think the math m ...more
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Diana Spechler is the author of the novels Who by Fire and Skinny.
More about Diana Spechler...

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