Review: Wintergirls

I read an absolutely fantabulous book yesterday! So here it goes...

Book Summary:

“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.

In her most emotionally wrenching, lyrically written book since the multiple-award-winning Speak, Laurie Halse Anderson explores Lia’s descent into the powerful vortex of anorexia, and her painful path toward recovery.

My Opinion:

Having recently read Speak, I was crazy to get my hands on this book since I'd heard that it was Anderson's lastest work. And boy was it good!

The books starts off with Lia's reaction after being told that her best friend Cassie has died. In the last months,Cassie had stopped talking to Lia...until the night that Cassie died. Cassie called Lia 33 times and left messages, but Lia didn't pick up.

Lia begins blaming herself for Cassie's death. Which is more than enough to send Lia on a downward spiral, since she's already dealing with a controlling mother she can't stand, a father who's never around, and unsympathetic peers.

Lia had previously had problems with anorexia and cutting, and Cassie's death is the spark that triggers them again. Lia starts limiting her eating, until she tries to consume only 500 calories or less a day. It seems that nothing will stop Lia from destroying herself. She's continually haunted by the ghost of Cassie, whose death had been caused by bulemia.

I can't get over how beautifully written this book was. The descriptions and figurative language were powerful and moving, and her writing style was lyrical and poetic. Stylistically, Anderson has created something truly unique: there are words crossed out, refrains that show what Lia's really thinking, and a whole two pages in the middle of the book where the same words are repeated over and over again.

The way Anderson handled the subject of anorexia seemed so realistic. Readers will know every inch of Lia's thinking process: how she agonizes over every bite she takes, how she punishes herself for eating, how she blames everything on herself until the only solution she can find is to cut more and eat less.

When I finished the book, I just sat there for a while, the words buzzing inside of my head. I am truly, truly amazed by the powerful prose and equally powerful message in Wintergirls.

Read it!

I give it a 9/10


I'm not dead, yet...

I admit it, I've been bad with updating the blog lately. School is pretty much gobbling up any free time I have. >< I haven't had the chance to write any book reviews lately, although I should mention that since last week I've determined to become a reformed, contemporary-loving reader. Usually, 90% of the books I read are fantasy. And 98% of the YA books I read are fantasy. I mean, I love love love fantasy. But lately I've been tiring of it, and now I'm in read-all-the-contemporary-I-can-get-my-hands-on mode.

I've started off my new reformed reading career with Speak by Laurie Halse Henderson and Break by Hannah Moscowitz and they were both lovely, beautifully written books. So I think I may start reading more contemporary now. Yay!

In other news, I am happy to announce that I have eaten 4 chocolate truffles today after a few weeks long agony of chocolate withdrawal. They were absolutely delicious, with dark chocolate hard shells on the outside, and gooey caramel on the inside. And I had a bit of walnut caramel chocolate clusters, which were crunchy and sweet, and...
onom nom nom nom. Here, I even have a pic to looky at. *gazes with rapt attention*

Anyways, I'm a bit excited and worried about flying tomorrow. It's the going somewhere new that excites me, not the six hour plane ride. But oh wells. It would be my dream come true to be able to travel whenever I felt like it. And I'm really looking forward to all the food! Although packing really is a drag...*folds t-shirts*


FREE BOOKS (Why Pulse IT is Amaaazing)

So, Simon & Schuster has this really cool program called Pulse IT. I've been on it for maybe a year? (I think) and it's great. Because it allows teens aged 14-18 to read free books and review them! You heard that right. FREE BOOKS.

They recently did a huge remodeling of the program; before they would mail me a book every month or so to review. But now they've put everything online. Which makes it more convenient and way easier to sign up for, but much worse for me pobre eyes.

They have a few books they offer in every round that stay up for a 60-day reading period. And they have lots of fun programs, including sweepstakes, contests, message boards, and author appearances.

Anyways, I thought you guys might be interested in it. Here's the link, you can sign up for it and begin reading right this minute!


Catching Fire *cough* Ramblings *cough* Review

I finally got to read Catching Fire last night. FINALLY. I'm sure everyone's already read it...but, I like to humor myself and I like book reviews so here it goes:

Book Description:

Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen has won the annual Hunger Games with fellow district tribute Peeta Mellark. But it was a victory won by defiance of the Capitol and their harsh rules. Katniss and Peeta should be happy. After all, they have just won for themselves and their families a life of safety and plenty. But there are rumors of rebellion among the subjects, and Katniss and Peeta, to their horror, are the faces of that rebellion. The Capitol is angry. The Capitol wants revenge.

My Opinion:

How can I not like anything that's the sequel to the Hunger Games? For that reason alone, I really enjoyed reading Catching Fire. But Collins has again delivered a suspenseful, well-written novel with characters that jump off of the page. So that's why I LOVE Catching Fire!

Collins returns to some very familiar ground from the last book, but I don't mind in the slightest. She explores District Twelve and its residents in greater depth, so the reader can really get a feel for the place where Katniss has lived all of her life. And then *whispers* in the later part of the book she brings back an event from the first book, which is just as beautifully inventive and suspenseful as the first time. *finishes trying to avoid spoilers* And the love triangle heats up, as Gale and Peeta vie for Katniss's attentions.

Ooh and I really liked the new villain, President Snow. He's fittingly creepy, and when Collins describes his smell as that of "roses and blood" it makes my stomach turn. It's like he's rotten underneath but he's trying to mask it. I think that's just like the Capitol.

I am so happy that Colins continued describing the lavishness of the Capitol. The tantalizing food descriptions and the gorgeous outfits that readers will remember from The Hunger Games continue in Catching Fire, and they are some of my favorite parts of the book.

I also enjoyed the introduction of more political elements , with the Districts churning with rebellious ideas and Katniss and Peeta the *possible* (willing or no) leaders of an uprising.

Throughout the book, I found myself amazed by how inventive and well-thought out the book was: especially the technology, customs of the Capitol, and most of all the past Hunger Games that Katniss will learn about. I mean, when we find out how Haymitch won his round of the Hunger Games, I literally stopped reading and thought to myself, "WOW. How did she ever think of that?" I had several more moments like that throughout the book.

I'm still mulling over certain aspects of the book in my head. I've decided I like the ending, but I can't help feeling that the first two books were almost like episodes in a TV show where they say, "HAHAHA To Be Continued" right when you're anxious to know what's going to happen next. There's bold print on the last page titled "End of Book Two" but I did not expect the book to end right there, right when all these new revelations and issues have surfaced. But hey, what am I complaining about? That just means that there's going to be more sequels. Yippee!

I give it a 9.5/10

Okay, I'll stop rambling now. CATCHING FIRE!!!!!!!!!!


A Bit of Fro-yo Praising and Catching Fire Fan-girlism

*is a fan of long titles*

I had the best frozen yogurt today. Strawberry cheesecake, chocolate, and double vanilla. I love frozen yogurt shops, there's about five around here that sprang up with in a few months of each other in this fro-yo craze. Personally, I don't like the self-serve as much (can never get the peaks to go right). But I love watching as the yogurt-twirlers? swirlers? workers? artfully arrange the yogurt into perfect, delicious mounds of sugary dairy goodness. Mmm.

I really, really, REALLY want to read Catching Fire, but I can't make it to the bookstore today. (All that darn AP Bio homework!). So I'll settle for mooning about the house in the sticky, awful heat, fans vainly turned onto high power. But I am constantly thinking of the Catching Fire. Yesterday, Red was kind enough to post a link for an interview with Suzanne Collins, with has sated my fan-girlism somewhat. So I decided to post it here as well. Enjoy! And I promise, promise, promise to post a book review of Catching Fire ASAP!

Here's the link for the Borders interview:
Suzanne Collins | Borders Media

And if you're like, really obsessed, here's part 1 of another interview on youtube.

You can find the rest of it on youtube.