The Stone Girl by Alyssa B. Sheinmel
"She feels like a creature out of a fairy tale; a girl who discovers that her bones are really made out of stone, that her skin is really as thin as glass, that her hair is brittle as straw, that her tears have dried up so that she cries only salt. Maybe that's why it doesn't hurt when she presses hard enough to begin bleeding: it doesn't hurt, because she's not real anymore.
Sethie Weiss is hungry, a mean, angry kind of hunger that feels like a piece of glass in her belly. She’s managed to get down to 111 pounds and knows that with a little more hard work—a few more meals skipped, a few more snacks vomited away—she can force the number on the scale even lower. She will work on her body the same way she worked to get her perfect grades, to finish her college applications early, to get her first kiss from Shaw, the boy she loves, the boy who isn’t quite her boyfriend.
Sethie will not allow herself one slip, not one bad day, not one break in concentration. Her body is there for her to work on when everything and everyone else—her best friend, her schoolwork, and Shaw—are gone."- summary from Amazon
WOW. I really need to read more of Sheinmel's books. I've been a fan of her sister's for a while and have been meaning to read her books, but it took this blog tour to finally squeeze one of her books into my reading schedule.
Sheinmel's prose is effortless in this book and it really seemed almost stream-of-consciousness writing even though it was done in third person. Thoughts flowed out naturally and moved in that sort of rhythm. It was really interesting.
Reading Sethie's story was different from the other food/weight issue books I've read. Sethie just seemed like such a real character and, like Sheinmel writes in a letter to her readers (at least in the ARC, not sure if it'll show up in the hardcover), not just an anorexic or bulemic or whatever. Sethie is a mixture of everything and it was heartbreaking to read her thoughts.
What I also liked was how we just see how Sethie sees things- she has such a different perspective on how much she eats versus someone else's perspective as the reader sees toward the end of the book when Sethie is confronted. Sheinmel did a wonderful job with all the interactions between characters too. I loved the characters of Janey and Ben and it was always great to see them in the scene.
Overall, a fantastic novel and I need to go back and read Sheinmel's first two books very soon. The Stone Girl will be released August 28! You can pre-order a copy from Amazon by clicking the link above.
FTC: Received ARC from publisher. Link above is an Amazon Associate link; any profit goes toward funding contests.