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Grade 8 Up-Stuck with a bunch of Barfers and Starvers, Janie, 16, describes her experiences at Golden Slopes, a rehab facility. Partly dead serious and partly humorous, her narrative slowly changes as she goes from believing that she's almost normal to understanding that she is sick and needs help. Other patients include various girls, an older woman, and a couple of boys, all of whom have wide-ranging issues at the heart of their pain. While other books are more realistic about the time involved in treating eating disorders, Littman provides a sympathetic character and a quick overview of treatment and hopeful progress. Janie moves from denial of habitual bulimia to release back to her regular routine in only three weeks. Her parents are loving, her family is loyal, and her friends are forgiving. The universality of Janie's blindness to her own behaviour is clearly portrayed, as is her later insight into her destructive choices. Drinking and sexual situations are necessary to the plot and are described realistically. This is a worthy addition to the current books on the topic for its relatively lighter touch and accessibility.-Carol A. Edwards, Denver Public Library
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Sarah Darer Littman's widely praised first novel for teens, CONFESSIONS OF A CLOSET CATHOLIC, won the 2006 Sydney Taylor Book Award. She is also the author of the YA novel PURGE. She lives in Connecticut with her family and a house which never seems to have enough bookshelves.