I think if you asked someone with anorexia or someone who cuts her/himself or someone who is a victim of incest or domestic abuse to describe their pain they would have a difficult time finding the words. The emotional bruising would be so deeply engrained and the memories so constant and layered that the edges would be impossible to find. Lucky for all who have been so deeply hurt that Laurie Halse Anderson who has both the capacity to feel the pain, to walk the walk and the genius to find the words to create the visual images, to describe the colors of the hurt and the courage to write it out painful step by painful step so survivors can feel seen, heard and loved.

This is the story of two teenage girls whose tip of the iceberg symptom is an eating disorder. One of them doesn't make it. The other girl feels incredibly guilty that she didn't answer the 33 phone calls her friend placed to her in her most desperate moments. This other girl is now battling even more demons. This is her painful, overwhelmingly sad journey and her chance to rise like a phoenix from the darkness and all of her fears.

The voice that whispers the calorie count of every bite is an ally or is it? The pain and suffering she inflicts on herself are intended to keep her safe, aren't they? This is a gift to every girl who is drowning in her fears no matter what the cause. It's hard to hold this girl's hand, Leah's hand, but if you do, you'll know what it's like to hide and run and you'll find out what it's like to risk being willing to be hurt and knowing that there is so much for you waiting in the next slice of life. Ages 13 and up 28 pages  978-0142415573

Recommended by: Barb

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