Review: "Wintergirls" by Laurie Halse Anderson

5152478Author: Laurie Halse Anderson
Genre: Young Adult/Realistic Fiction
Publication: Penguin Putnam Inc
Release Date: February 23rd 2010
Pages: 278
Spoilers: Not really


I wasn’t planning on reading this book already, but ever since I heard about it, I was so excited to read it, I just searched it up online. I know, hate me for it. But I’m going to buy the book anyways, because I wanna re-read this book for sure! Back to the book; I finished it in two days because it was so addictive. I just couldn’t stop thinking about the main character, Lia.

““Dead girl walking,” the boys say in the halls.
“Tell us your secret,” the girls whisper, one toilet to another.
I am that girl.
I am the space between my thighs, daylight shining through.
I am the bones they want, wired on a porcelain frame.

Lia and Cassie are best friends, wintergirls frozen in matchstick bodies, competitors in a deadly contest to see who can be the skinniest. But what comes after size zero and size double-zero? When Cassie succumbs to the demons within, Lia feels she is being haunted by her friend’s restless spirit.”

This book haunted me, really. Lia is struggling with anorexia and her best (ex)friend suddenly dies from the effects of bulimia. Not very surprising that Lia is triggered by that event. She was hospitalized a few times before Cassie, the (ex)friend, died. But now, all she wants to do is get skinny again. The voices inside her head tell her that she will never be skinny enough. She knows there are voices in her head telling her to stop eating, but she can’t fight them.

She also self harms, but her dad disgusts this and tells her she can only live with him (divorced parents, ‘hates’ mom) if she stops cutting and starts eating again. Towards the ending of the book, her condition gets worse.

I believe this disease, anorexia, is one of the worst things that can happen to a young woman. It’s so hard to fight it, that’s exactly what this story is telling us, and even though you are in recovery or past recovery, anorexia will haunt you forever. And Lia wants to give up. She is an amazing girl, funny and sweet, but her anorexia is getting the best of her. She counts calories like a lunatic and she is exercising to keep losing weight. And all in secret, because her dad is trying to get her better. I just couldn’t believe how blind her father could be. It’s like he’s denying his daughter is slowly killing herself.

This book is amazing and almost made me cry at the ending. I was touched and I loved the way Anderson wrote the book. I loved the writing and it is something we can all relate to: try to fight our own demons. And if you don’t know what I mean with that, you’re lucky. Read this book anyway, unless you have an ED yourself. It can be a bit triggering because Lia is constantly counting her calorie intake.

Wintergirls touched me deeply and I recommend this book to any teen who reads this! It might make you understand anorexia better 🙂

Nanouk Meijer

Nanouk is the founder and owner of the website. She runs the website, takes care of the lay-out, give-aways, social media, book reviews and events. She is 25 years old and graduated from 'Comparative Literature' at Utrecht University. She is Digital Product Manager at HarperCollins Holland and staff reviewer at YA Books Central. She breaths books.

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