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Zoe Letting Go

3.78  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,402 Ratings  ·  209 Reviews
A girl's letters to her best friend reveal two lives derailed by anorexia in this haunting debut that's Laurie Halse Anderson's Wintergirls meets The Sixth Sense.

Zoe knows she doesn’t belong in a hospital—so why is she in one?

Twin Birch isn’t just any hospital. It’s a strange mansion populated by unnerving staff and glassy-eyed patients. It’s a place for girls with serious
Hardcover, 279 pages
Published June 14th 2012 by Razorbill
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Cinder by Marissa MeyerThe Selection by Kiera CassUnder the Never Sky by Veronica RossiEverneath by Brodi AshtonThrone of Glass by Sarah J. Maas
2012 Debut Authors (Young Adult & Middle Grade)
253rd out of 1,007 books — 6,358 voters
Bitterblue by Kristin CashoreMy Life Next Door by Huntley FitzpatrickCold Fury by T.M. GoegleinKeep Holding On by Susane ColasantiNo Safety in Numbers by Dayna Lorentz
Penguin Teen Summer 2012!
18th out of 25 books — 60 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Bark's Book Nonsense
I don’t know where I got this one or where I even heard about it but it is highly likely that I was suckered in by the blurb. Stick “haunting” in your cover copy and this sucker is likely to buy it.

A girl's letters to her best friend reveal two lives derailed by anorexia in this haunting debut.

Zoe knows she doesn’t belong in a hospital—so why is she in one?

Maybe I’ve read too many books or maybe I’ve developed a super smart brain in my old age (hey, it could happen) but I think I know how the
May 25, 2012 Shannel rated it it was amazing
I won this advanced copy from Good Reads.

I’m not sure how I want to compile my thoughts for this book. There was such a presence of underlying sadness that just resonated with me.

Zoe finds herself at Twin Birch, a secluded home for girls battling issues. She’s told she’s finally somewhere that can help her, but the problem is, she doesn’t think she needs help.

Forced into treatment for anorexia, Zoe uses all of her energy to find out why she’s really at Twin Birch. Coping with her separation from
Aug 13, 2012 Rachel rated it liked it
First off, I personally think that the description written for this book is a bit misleading and overdramatic. The reason I had originally picked this book up was it’s comparison to Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson, which is one of my favorite books. In general, I think comparisons to very popular works of literature are risky, because they create very high expectations. That was exactly the case for me when I sat down with this book. I don’t I’ve ever read something as beautifully haunting ...more
Jun 27, 2012 Stephanie rated it liked it
Shelves: 2012
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 26, 2012 InkBitten rated it liked it
Shelves: sarah
Judged by Cover: Subtlety is Key

First, let's take the time to give the cover designer a round of applause for NOT chopping of the poor model's body. Good job!
For a quick glance, the cover might not appear that extraordinary. In fact, it may even get you to start worrying that it's time for yet another appointment to the optometrist. At a second glance, though, the cover makes you think of a photograph that someone crumpled up and threw away. Any design with that much though but not shoving it i
This book is an ambitious debut novel that takes a very different approach to eating disorders and recovery from anorexia. The novel’s titular protagonist, is sent to a rehab center but doesn’t know why—she’s so very different from the other girls, she doesn’t fit in, she’s not a freak like them, etc., etc. Most of Zoe Letting Go relies on mystery and, at times, it reads something like a psychological thriller, which may or may not have been a good stylistic decision, but definitely made this bo ...more
"When you have a small group of friends—or no friends except for one other person—twenty minutes is the precise length of time it takes to become achingly reacquainted with your loneliness.”

Setting:Brooklyn, New York and Twin Birch; 2013

Coverly Love?:No I was so confused at first because I thought there was something wrong with the cover for it to be so blurry. Than I realized that it was supposed to represent a blurry old photo. I don't really get the meaning of it for the story, though.

Ms. Yingling
Jun 18, 2012 Ms. Yingling rated it liked it
Zoe is not at all pleased when her mother wakes her up, all but throws her in the car, and dumps her at Twin Birch. It's not a hospital, it's not a jail, but the six girls who are there have very strict rules they need to follow, especially when it comes to food and "sharing" with the other patients. Zoe doesn't need to be at Twin Birch; she tries not to fight against the counselors when she has to do therapy sessions, she eats what she is supposed to even though she can tell she's gaining weigh ...more
*not a native english speaker

I started this book thinking it was something else. I don't know where I was thinking reading the plot but reading it I saw that this was about girls with eating disorders but I didn't stop there. I like this kind of books. I don't read them very often because they are depresing on some levels.

The book is part Zoes journal , part Zoes letters to her best friend Elise. What was weird was the fact that Zoe describing her life showed signs of anorexia all over the plac
Miharu Rokujou
Aug 27, 2012 Miharu Rokujou rated it it was ok
Shelves: eating-disorders
I wanted to read this book because the description on Goodreads made it sound incredibly interesting to me, seeing as I've read the books that this site related it to. I was highly disappointed, however, because it didn't appear to be anything like those other books I actually did enjoy.

I was bored from the beginning and considered dropping the book about half way through. It got slightly more interesting after the half way point, but it certainly felt like it was dragging on and nothing was rea
Aug 06, 2013 Monique rated it it was amazing
Talk about a book that hits home. As a sufferer of anorexia at the same age as Zoe, I found this book relatable and truthful. I can only assume that Nora Price has also suffered through the hardships of anorexia , as I assume only a sufferer can understand the complexity of anorexia and the control over your life. My initial thoughts about Elise were that she was the "other" Zoe- meaning a created person to distinguish the eating disorder from Zoe herself. A very therapeutic approach to eating d ...more
Mar 19, 2014 LeFaBook rated it it was amazing

Die Wahrheit liegt in der Vergangenheit

Ohne Vorwarnung wird die 16-jährige Zoe von ihrer Mutter in eine Einrichtung namens »Twin Birch« verfrachtet. Was soll sie hier zwischen all den dürren, kranken Mädchen? Ihr einziger Halt sind die Briefe, die sie an ihre beste Freundin Elise schreibt. Doch Elise antwortet nicht. Nie. Nur langsam erkennt Zoe, dass der Grund für ihren Aufenthalt in »Twin Birch« in ihrer Vergangenheit liegt, bei Elise. Erst als sie die tragische Wahrheit akzeptiert, gel
BAYA Librarian
Sep 15, 2012 BAYA Librarian rated it liked it
Debut author Nora Price has contributed a new Young Adult book to the catalog of eating disorder books, following a teen girl’s institutionalization into an anorexia clinic, through lessening stages of denial, to recovery. Zoe, 16, finds herself en route through rural Massachusetts, away from her home in Brooklyn, being driven somewhere, for some reason she can’t deduce. Zoe wonders what she did to provoke her mother into making her pack and leave home. She can’t recall what brought on this pare ...more
Aug 25, 2012 Rebecca rated it liked it
Shelves: tough-issues
Debut author Nora Price has contributed a new Young Adult book to the catalog of eating disorder books, following a teen girl’s institutionalization into an anorexia clinic, through lessening stages of denial, to recovery. Zoe, 16, finds herself en route through rural Massachusetts, away from her home in Brooklyn, being driven somewhere, for some reason she can’t deduce. Zoe wonders what she did to provoke her mother into making her pack and leave home. She can’t recall what brought on this pare ...more
Jul 06, 2013 Kibbenza rated it it was ok
Zoe Letting Go starts off with the protagonist (Zoe, duh) being dropped off at a treatment center for girls with anorexia. There are only five other patients, and they're all quiet and basically wasting away. Zoe can't figure out why she's been sent here. She's not frail like them, she's never tried to harm herself. Why has her mother sent her here for six weeks during the summer?

To pass time, and to help sort her thoughts, she journals and writes letters to her best friend Elise. She sees a th
This is one of those books that just gets right down deep inside you. It's simply amazing, so heartbreaking and wonderful, and easily one of my 'favourite' books of the year.

(view spoiler)
Feb 10, 2015 Juhina rated it really liked it
3.5/5 stars

Zoe Letting Go is definitely in a genre I don't usual venture into and that is the realistic contemporary. Also, this novel centers around a girl with an eating disorder which is the type of novel Farah loves. Therefore I had some restraint when I picked this novel up. However this novel was such a different adventure. Also the main protagonist was so likable. However till the end you don't really understand exactly what is the real problem with Zoe. However that was what kept me flip
Aug 26, 2013 Beka rated it really liked it
3.75 stars. I really liked this book. I'm tempted to give this book 4 stars but I didn't have the burning desire to get through this book like I have with others. I was motivated to get through it fairly quickly though. The beginning bothered me because Zoe had no idea she was going to an institution until her mother dropped her off there and then no idea why she was there. I thought that was a little dramatic... but then it started to pull together as she continued to write in her journal and g ...more
Dec 13, 2015 Marnie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: drama
I couldn't put this down until I finished reading it. A very well written book about a girl struggling with an eating disorder, but yet she is blind to what led her to a treatment center, because while she has an eating disorder she doesn't quite look like the others. This book is very real out there in today society.
Lyrical Catlin
Dec 28, 2015 Lyrical Catlin rated it really liked it
The book that I have read is Zoe, Letting Go by Nora Price. It is a fiction book about a girl who goes to rehab to get treatment for her eating disorder. It is set in a rehab house for girls with eating disorders. The main character is a girl named Zoe, she has anorexia. She is sent to rehab by her mother who wants her to get better but she can't until she realizes some things.
Zoe is sent to a treatment center by her mother for her anorexia. However, Zoe believes that she is not like the other
Elyse Columb
Oct 30, 2015 Elyse Columb rated it really liked it
This book is about a tennager named Zoe. She has been sent to an anorexia hospital, called Twin Birch. The reason she has been sent here is unclear to her, but she has fierce determination to find out. There are also five other patients along with Zoe. She becomes friends with two of them, Haley and Victoria. When Zoe starts to write to her best friend, Elise, she gets no response back. Is there a reason why? Does this have anything to do with the reason Zoe is in Twin Birch? If Zoe finds out wh ...more
I picked this up from the sale section of McNally Robinson and read it in two days.

I'm not sure what it says about me that I keep reading books about eating disorders. Either it's just an incredibly popular topic for YA literature, or it's a topic that I'm awfully interested in; I have no idea which is actually true. (Probably both with more emphasis on the former.)

Zoe Letting Go is a quick read. I found it very interesting. You learn everything along with Zoe, who is an unreliable narrator. Y
Jan 15, 2015 Ashley rated it really liked it
This time around, I picked up the debut novel from Nora Price, entitled Zoe Letting Go. There’s some mystery involved, so won’t give too much away for those of you who want to pick it up (and I highly recommend you do), but its has all those elements that make a good book a great book. Mystery, intrigue, sisterhood, love, loss. The book stars protagonist Zoe, who is suddenly sent to this unnamed facility for girls for six weeks. She has no idea why she’s there, and is completely convinced her mo ...more
Nik Mariam
Sep 24, 2015 Nik Mariam rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
In my own perspective, I find this book quite boring as I love reading historical fictions, fantasy, dystopian, mystery & crime novels. But yeah I wanted a change, so why not? Ok whatever, getting on with my review.

I felt like this book is really really dragging, I mean for like over 30 days all they did were the same ass routine which include; forced eating food that they pretty much loathe, 3 on 3 girls backbiting about each other. Halfway through the book I almost felt like giving up on i
Sep 15, 2015 Lisa rated it it was amazing
Shelves: owned
Very fast and easy read - a little confusing in parts but all your questions are answered in the end. Plus the ending gave me chills.
Sep 24, 2014 Amy rated it liked it
3.5 of 5 stars
When Zoe's mother drops her off at Twin Birch, a small, treatment center nestled in rural Massachusetts, she has no idea why she's admitted to the facility's 6 week summer program. The only five others residents, all appear to be anorexic, but Zoe doesn't have an eating disorder. She spends her free time writing letters to her best friend Elise (no electronics allowed) and writing about her days at Twin Birch. As she waits for replies from Elise, engages in therapy, and befriends a
Jul 04, 2015 Viviana rated it liked it
Shelves: have-a-copy
Zoe Letting Go, begins with Zoe being admitted to Twin Birch, a treatment center for eating disorders, thou at a time she doesn't know where she is and why she is there. It alternates between diary entries and letter to Elise, her best friend. Zoe is a "regular" teenager, unpopular but not a total outcast. She goes through some great internal struggles without even realizing it until later on.

At first I wasn't to impressed with this book, it had little "action" and it drag in places that I had
Dec 05, 2015 Rhonda rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015
At first the story was really slow getting started and I was beginning to think I needed to lay off the teen-emo books for a while but...right before the end the story started picking up and then the end...~WOW~~ I did not see it coming.

Once I finished the book, I went back to skim the beginning to see all of the hints and clues I missed to start with.

I will def check out something else that Nora has written, she has piqued my interest.
Stacy Fetters
Jul 11, 2015 Stacy Fetters rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Imagine being woken up by your mother, being told to pack clothes for a few weeks and then having to sit in a car with your mother, feeling clueless and having none of your questions answered.
Zoe and her mom arrive at the facility, its gorgeous and expensive. Zoe still has no idea what shes doing here. They are welcomed and given a tour, as shes still wondering whats shes doing there.
Her questions go unanswered for a long time. Shes in a treatment center for girls with anorexia.
She goes threw up
Feb 03, 2016 Aria rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Review can also be found here.

Zoe Letting Go is Nora Price’s debut young adult book and my first impressions went just like this: “Interesting blurb…” and upon a closer inspection, “That’s pretty bad Photoshop on the cover. Huh.” But hey, Photoshop isn’t something you can easily use without constant practice combined with a good eye, dedication and a degree of perfectionism.

Anyway, despite being a Haruki Murakami fan, I don’t fancy the long and constant descriptions of everything. I know it a
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Madison Mega-Mara...: Zoe Letting Go 1 1 Oct 14, 2013 06:08PM  
Unanswered Questions 2 29 Oct 02, 2012 09:26PM  
  • Crazy
  • Fall to Pieces
  • Getting Somewhere
  • 34 Pieces of You
  • Life is But a Dream
  • This One Time with Julia: First Edition
  • Never Enough
  • My Life in Black and White
  • Fingerprints of You
  • Kiss the Morning Star
  • All You Never Wanted
  • Perfect Escape
  • Counting Backwards
  • All These Lives
  • Miracle
  • Holding on to Zoe
  • Without Tess
  • Try Not to Breathe
I'm a writer living in Brooklyn. My debut YA novel is "Zoe Letting Go", published by Razorbill in June 2012.

Are you a YA blogger? Want a review copy? Send a message to

(or message me on Goodreads, but sometimes I forget to check my Goodreads mail! eep)
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