Author: Donna Conner
Published: October 2012 from Scholastic Point & Scholastic Audio
Find your voice.Skinny is the counterpart to Laurie Halse Anderson’s Wintergirls. Where Wintergirls is about two girls dealing with anorexia, Skinny is about Ever, a fifteen year old girl dealing with obesity. It’s a touch look at what it’s like to be a girl in high school and being overweight. It hit really close to home for me and it was a hard read, but I’m glad I got through it and I hope I’m now a better person for it.
Hopeless. Freak. Elephant. Pitiful. These are the words of Skinny, the vicious voice that lives inside fifteen-year-old Ever Davies’s head. Skinny tells Ever all the dark thoughts her classmates have about her. Ever knows she weighs over three hundred pounds, knows she’ll probably never be loved, and Skinny makes sure she never forgets it.
But there is another voice: Ever’s singing voice, which is beautiful but has been silenced by Skinny. Partly in the hopes of trying out for the school musical—and partly to try and save her own life—Ever decides to undergo a risky surgery that may help her lose weight and start over.
With the support of her best friend, Ever begins the uphill battle toward change. But demons, she finds, are not so easy to shake, not even as she sheds pounds. Because Skinny is still around. And Ever will have to confront that voice before she can truly find her own.
Ever 15 and weighs 300+ pounds, she was never a skinny girl, but when her mom died, Ever turned to food to deal with her grief. And to top it all off, Ever has Skinny in her head, filling in what “everyone is really thinking” about Ever. She really wants to improve her situation, but Ever is stuck in a spiral she can’t get out of and it takes her finally hitting a wall for her to make the big choice to have surgery to help her deal with her weight. The rest of the story is about Ever dealing with her inner demons that were created over years of being overweight and having self esteem issues and finding herself again.
I did listen to the audiobook of Skinny, and I wasn’t as thrilled with the narration, but it was still well done. I’m not big on “voices” for each character in my audiobooks, it kind of takes me out of the story. I don’t mind different inflections or subtle things to make the voices stand out, but when it’s forced it doesn’t work for me. In the case of Skinny, my issue is with the voices for the guys in the story; it made them both seem more ridiculous than they really are. But the narration for Ever was very well done and I could really relate to her as a character through the narration.
Skinny is an empowering story, for everyone and I would love to see educators use both Wintergirls and Skinny in classes and see the books looked at side by side.
My Overall Rating
Really a 3.5