03 August 2012

Imprint Friday: Skinny by Diana Spechler

Welcome to Imprint Friday and today's featured imprint: Harper Perennial. Stop by each week to be introduced to a must-read title from one of my favorite imprints. I know you'll be adding many of these books to your wish list.

What woman in America hasn't had at least a few moments of despair concerning her body and self-image? The hero of Diana Spechler's Skinny spent her entire life counting calories and obsessing over her diet. That is until the day her father died.

Here's the publisher's summary:

After her father’s death, twenty-six-year-old Gray Lachmann finds herself compulsively eating. Desperate to stop bingeing, she abandons her life in New York City for a job at a southern weight-loss camp. There, caught among the warring egos of her devious co-counselor, Sheena; the self-aggrandizing camp director, Lewis; his attractive assistant, Bennett; and a throng of combative teenage campers, she is confronted by a captivating mystery: her teenage half-sister, Eden, whom Gray never knew existed. Now, while unraveling her father’s lies, Gray must tackle her own self-deceptions and take control of her body and her life.

Visceral, poignant, and often wickedly funny, Skinny illuminates a young woman’s struggle to make sense of the link between hunger and emotion, and to make peace with her demons, her body, and herself.
By the time Gray has settled into her new digs at Camp Carolina, she's contending with a bucketful of issues: she has an ex-boyfriend, a possible new boyfriend, and a possible half-sister. She is dealing with a poor body image, self-loathing, an eating disorder, and a sleazy boss. And on top of it all, she is still mourning her father and trying to understand who he really was.

Spechler's novel will resonate with many readers. Few of us are able to ignore the daily barrage of mixed messages from the media: Ads that tell us skinny is good and skinnier is better are followed by others that encourage us to eat more French fries and ask for extra cheese on our pizzas. It seems near impossible to find sane information on health, weight, nutrition, and fitness and even more difficult to discover the balance between enjoying life and being healthy.

Although Skinny is a novel and isn't meant to be an éxposé on the weight-loss industry or a guide to resolving one's issues with food, many readers will relate to Gray and her struggle to find peace with herself, her body, and her parents.

If you haven't yet read Diana Spechler's Skinny, this is a good time to pick up a copy; right now the eBook is only 99¢. Why? Because it's August, and that means it's time for Harper Perennial's 20 eBooks for $20 sale. Click the yellow button below to see which titles are on sale. If you've been reading my Imprint Friday feature over the last couple of years, you see that several books I've recommended are on the list.
For more on Diana Spechler, visit her website, read an interview at the Huffington Post, or see the conversation at The New York Jewish Week.

Harper Perennial is a featured imprint on Beth Fish Reads. For information about the imprint, please read Erica Barmash's welcome note posted here on June 18, 2010. I encourage you to add your reviews of Harper Perennial books to the review link-up page; it's a great way to discover Good Books for Cool People. And don't miss the The Olive Reader, the Harper Perennial blog.

Skinny at an Indie
Skinny at Powell's
Skinny at Book Depository
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Published by HarperCollins / Harper Perennial, 2011
ISBN-13: 9780062020369

8 comments:

Sandy Nawrot 8/3/12, 7:29 AM  

This was a compulsively readable book, with all kinds of emotional trauma! I think I got another e-book by this author (Who By Fire) that I really need to read as well!

bermudaonion 8/3/12, 8:18 AM  

It is hard to find good information on health and nutrition, partly because it seems to change every day. This sounds great!

Diana Spechler 8/3/12, 8:31 AM  

Thank you so much for the beautiful review! What a treat to wake up to this. :)
-Diana

Mary (Bookfan) 8/3/12, 8:54 AM  

This sounds great! Going to get it now. Thanks for telling us about it!

rhapsodyinbooks 8/3/12, 9:40 AM  

I read this too and of course it is hard to read about all those issues that make us cringe, and I don't doubt hard to write about it too! I have a lot of admiration for the author!

Julie P. 8/3/12, 2:54 PM  

Another one that I've been meaning to read.

Anita 8/3/12, 11:11 PM  

I went through the list quickly yesterday, but your review of this one caused it to stand out. Purchased and will need to find a place in time to read it. Thanks :)

Daryl 8/6/12, 8:35 AM  

adding this to my new list

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