Thursday, April 30, 2009

Review by Alex- Wintergirls

Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson:

"Dead girl walking," the boys say in the halls.
"Tell us your secret," a 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 friendas restless spirit.

I was just blown away by Wintergirls. I had high expecations for Wintergirls since I just recently read Speak for the first time and absolutely loved it.

Wintergirls is so beautiful and heartwrenching. I think my favourite aspect of this book is the writing. It's unusual and different then others, where it is simply chapters and paragraphs, (although that doesn't mean that these books aren't good, of course). But Wintergirls stands out, and Laurie Halse Anderson at that, because of the unconventional writing, in my opinion. Wintergirls is written more like in thoughts- the narration is constantly interrupted with bits of Lia's haunted mind. She repeatedly thinks of Cassie, poor Cassie, with this right aligned. And lots of Lia's thoughts are crossed out- Lia's always correcting her thoughts. Umm, I'm not explaining it that well.

But that's the thing with Wintergirls. It's difficult to explain the sheer awsomeness of it. XD Anorexia is such a complex problem, but LAH writes about it perfectly, and Lia is completely relatable.

An interruption on this review:
I've noticed that I tend to like characters more when I can relate to them. I mean, doesn't everyone? So it makes sense for an author to make the main character a big reader, because, odds are, the readers who read the book are going to be big readers. Right, makes sense? I just think it's great. :)

Anyway, back to the review:
Lia is just a fully amazing character. She's got her problems, and is by no means perfect- far from it. But she's so real, and so incredibly raw. Her relationships with her parents and family is so believeable. Actually, the whole novel is utterly believeable. I think this is my first book which focuses on anorexia...Anyway, while I really have no personal expericence with anorexia, I was completely pulled into Wintergirls and Lia and her problems.

And the thing is, while most of the book is very depressing, and I felt saddenned at times, I was never without hope. There was always that glimmer to me. Lia could come out of the deep dark hole of self-doubt and anorexia. She just needed to really try, with actual encouragement from her family.

Lia was so strong though. I mean, sure, her strength is misdirected. But it takes a huge will power to not eat. I tried a 30 hour famine for school and I only lasted 20. XD So to be like, Lia... well, that's sheer madness to me. I'm just... so astounded my Lia. I could never even... imagine someone like her, but even so, she is just so real and she becomes alive. Just thinking back, all my thoughts are just like "...". I'm honestly trying to think of how to explain Lia and Wintergirls, and am at a bit of a loss.

So, the point: Read Wintergirls. READ IT. It will blow your brains away. Your mind will not only go into flight, but orbit. XD

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Oh. And Lia's smart, a huge reader, and she knits. Like, yesss. One cannot get more awesome than that. XD

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