Lucy 's Reviews > Wintergirls

Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson
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's review
Aug 26, 2009

it was amazing
bookshelves: teen, 2009, book-club
Read in January, 2009

Lia isn’t good at many things, but she is the best at one thing—being thin, thinner, the thinnest. Once upon a time, she and Cassie were the thinnest together. They swore it in blood at midnight on New Year’s, and they knew they could do it.

But Cassie got caught, and she stopped talking to Lia, stopped being her friends, until. Until her body was found in a motel room, dead and alone. And Lia found thirty-three voicemails from Cassie on her phone.

Now Lia is struggling. Struggling to stay the thinnest while her family tries to make her fat. She’s seeing Cassie’s ghost, luring her to the other side. And as Lia dwindles away to thin, thinner thinnest, she realizes that she will have to make a choice—Cassie, or her life.

This book is searing. It reminds me of The Road, not in content at all, but in that it’s hard to get into it—Lia’s voice is so painful and raw that it almost hurts to read. But once you’re in, it’s almost impossible to pull yourself out of Lia’s head.

In high school, we used to have Health Awareness Day every year, and every single year, the topic was anorexia and bulimia, until I honestly thought I’d puke if I had to sit through one more Lifetime movie about a girl with an eating disorder. I didn’t think there was anything left on the subject that could hold my interest or attention.

I was wrong. Lia is real. She thinks and breathes and feels, and she’s honest. This book is for everyone who has ever been a teenager, who has ever felt inadequate or useless or fat or stupid, who has ever felt like cutting themselves out of their own life. It is for anyone who thinks teenagers don’t feel as deeply and honestly as adults. It’s for anyone who knows a teenager.

Lia is honest. Not always with herself, but always with us, the reader. She gives us a window on what it’s like to hate the skin you’re in, on what it feels like to feel wretched and helpless, and what it feels like to wrest back any control you can find—the one thing you’re good at, the one thing you can do.

Wintergirls is not an easy book to read. It’s awful at times, and always haunting. You will not be able to forget it. And you will never again be able to think about eating disorders without hearing Lia’s searing voice in your head.
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Reading Progress

01/25/2009 page 162
58.27% "This book is utterly compelling. The voice is raw and painful and sucks you in to Lia's emotional world."
01/26/2009 page 260
93.53% "Lia's voice is searing. I can't get it out of my head."
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Comments <span class="smallText"> (showing 1-6 of 6) </span> <span class="smallText">(6 new)</span>

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Alexis This book is listed as being published in March 2009. How are you already reading it?

Lucy The joys of ARCs, my friend.

message 3: by christine. (new)

christine. Where do you get all these ARCs, Navah? :O

Lucy Friends in publishing places :).

Molly Magro I STILL cannot stop thinking about this book. So, so good and so, so terrifying.

message 6: by Janni (new) - added it

Janni I'm still thinking about it, too--powerful stuff.

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