Typical Melissa: "Melissa opened the pantry: chips, Twinkies, cheese crackers. "Translation: fat, fat, fat," she murmured. She couldn't bring herself to eat any of it. She turned and opened the fridge: leftover bacon, grease, a slice of cheesecake, calories, lots of calories."
High school isn't easy even at its plainest. But when one adds tons of homework, a cute boyfriend, and rigorous dance classes she just might go crazy. Or go thin. Melissa feels all the pressure on her and seeks to control the one thing she can: food. But when problems go sky-high and she constantly feels hollow, will her strategy work? Doesn't God want her to be thin?
Skinny explores a topic that's pretty close to my heart - anorexia. The disorder has captivated my interest for years. Starving yourself to fit in is so easy... and so wrong. It's a problem many teenage girls get into because of all the pressure and expectations others - and they themselves - have for them. The media version of beautiful doesn't help in the least. Skinny delves into the thoughts and feelings leading to an eating disorder. Laura also shows us what God has to say about food, and that is so powerful. God is, in fact, a great Curer, and He heals to this day.
I think the story could have been even better if written in first person, not third. Also, Melissa's boyfriend was underdeveloped and could have been improved by having other dimensions besides being cute. A scene/scenes from either church or youth group would have added to the spiritual side of the novel.
Overall, Laura L. Smith has written a story that dips into a real and large problem teens face. She reminds us that God is the solution to it.
This is the first in the False Reflections series. The second and third are Hot and Angry. Skinny is now free on kindle.
For more on Laura L. Smith visit her website and Facebook page.