Skinny by Donna Cooner

Ever is 15 years old and weighs 302 pounds. In her head, an invisible voice named Skinny broadcasts the thoughts of those around her. Skinny tells Ever what she already knows – she’s fat, ugly, pitiful, unlovable, unwanted. To reclaim the love of her life, Ever decides to go through with gastric bypass surgery – a controversial procedure for teens. Though the risks are high, Ever doesn’t care. All she wants is to be thin, beautiful, and silence Skinny forever.

Skinny is an entertaining read that talks about important issues, but I found no “wow” factor. I liked reading about gastric bypass surgery from a first-person narrator, and I enjoyed Ever’s mental and physical transformation. The plot was a bit formulaic, though, and I felt the description of Skinny as an independent person to be a bit much. However, Cooner’s novel gives a voice to teens struggling with negative body image, as well as highlights the controversial teen gastric bypass procedure, which is becoming an increasingly common occurrence.

Rating: 3/5

* YALSA Teen’s Top Ten Nominee, 2012

For full analysis (including flags and SPOILERS) click here.

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