Tuesday, January 11, 2011
by Laurie Halse Anderson
Wintergirls is a fictional account of Lia, an eighteen year old girl whose best friend just died, in a motel room, alone. Before she died, the two girls were not on speaking terms. The night Cassie died, she attempted to reconcile with Lia by calling her cell phone, 33 times. Now her childhood friend is dead and the guilt of not answering Cassie's calls as well as the secrets she holds are weighing heavily on her conscience. When in Junior High, the two girls had made a pact to be the skinniest, to be skinnier than one another. This pact triggered full blown anorexia nervosa, an illness that Lia has learned to hide very well, despite landing in treatment centers twice. Lia's mental health fades as she continues to deprive her body of food and secretly exercises obsessively in the middle of the night. Not only are voices in her head telling her she is worthless, stupid, fat etc., she is now followed around by a hallucination of Cassie's ghost, who praises Lia for not eating, encourages her to keep exercising, stay strong, so they can "be together" by New Years Eve. Using first person narrative and unique writing techniques, the author is amazingly talented by being able to demonstrate just how manipulative, secretive and mentally ill Lia has become while hiding her anorexia. Still, this character has so many redeeming qualities, including a special bond with her five year old sister, that you really want to see Lia conquer her illness. This is an amazing story, written by the author of both Speak and Chains. [If you enjoy this, you may also wish to try Massive by Julia Bell, Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson and Unbearable Lightness by Portia DeRossi.] -- recommended by Jessica H. - Walt Branch Library
[Also available in downloadable audio, book-on-cd formats.]
[ official Wintergirls page on the official Laurie Halse Anderson web site ]
Have you read this one? What did you think? Did you find this review helpful?
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