Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson

Lia and Cassie were best friends, wintergirls frozen in matchstick bodies.
But now Cassie is dead. Lia’s mother is busy saving other people’s lives.
Her father is away on business. Her stepmother is clueless. And the voice inside Lia’s head keeps telling her to remain in control, stay strong, lose more, weigh less. If she keeps on going this way – thin, thinner, thinnest – maybe she’ll disappear altogether. In her most emotionally wrenching, lyrically written book since the National Book Award finalist Speak, best-selling author Laurie Halse Anderson explores one girl’s chilling descent into the all-consuming vortex of anorexia.

I didn't know if i would like this book, I thought maybe it'd be too sad. not a good beach-read, for sure. but when i got into it, i really started to love it and desperately wanted Lia to be okay. It was bad enough that Cassie was gone, and at the same time, winning the contest to be the thinnest, but at the cost of her LIFE. Lia continues the contest by losing more and more weight. She's been in and out of rehab centers and runs away from help. Faking her way on the scale, taking laxatives, and destroying her life rapidly. Her family desperately wants to help her, but she's wasting away. Then, she starts hallucinating, seeing Cassie everywhere and having dreams about her, convinced that they are real, that is something that worried me much more and I was certain that Lia was not going to make it.

What's even more odd, is that you're never really sure if Lia has gone insane, or if there's a fantasy element intertwined with the anorexia story. It sort of leaves that to your imagination...and I like that. The characters are very three dimensional and jump on the page. Everyone from Lia's Step Mother to Lia's little sister are relateable characters that paint a vivid picture of a family in crisis. This is Halse-Anderson's most groundbreaking novel since "Speak". She isn't afraid to push the envelope and talk about things that some people don't even want to think about, and that is why she is one of my favorite authors.

Because this book is truly unforgettable, I give it
5 stars

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