Published by Feiwel and Friends
Summary: On page 1, Riley has just entered a treatment program for her anorexia, and has started a journal to record her experiences. During the next 53 days, she slowly and painfully looks at what got her there: her perfectionism; a gymnast sister with a “perfect” body; parents who don’t always listen or try to understand the implications of their actions. Riley makes a new friend, reconciles with her old friends who have been hurt by her eating disorder, and rediscovers her passion for drawing and art. She describes therapy sessions and some of the drama with the other girls in the program. By day 53, she’s ready to go home again, fearful of a relapse, but hopeful that she has acquired the tools to stand up for herself and do what’s best to keep herself healthy. 272 pages; grades 5-8.
Pros: Anyone who has ever had to deal with an inner critic or feeling not good enough will relate to Riley’s struggles as learns how to be kind to herself and tell people around her how she is feeling and what she needs. Jen Petro-Roy has also written a nonfiction book (published simultaneously with this one) called You Are Enough: Your Guide to Body Image and Eating Disorder Recovery.
Cons: I was extremely frustrated by Riley’s parents who seemed unwilling to even look at any behaviors that might have led to their daughter’s eating disorder.