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Posted May 18, 2012
Posted September 25, 2011
Honest and Hopeful - A Must for Middle School Libraries
4.5 - A must for middle school libraries
We all have our reasons to be happy, things that make us smile or brighten our days, but Hannah Carlisle has a notebook full of them. A notebook that is supposed to help her when times get rough. Only her reasons aren't enough. Her pain is deep, her loss monumental, her emotions raw. Hannah Carlisle will wander into the hearts of readers, burrow herself there, and force us to confront every unsettling, upsetting, and beautiful thing about this eighth grader and her journey to find herself again.
Katrina Kittle implicitly understands the young adult mind. Hannah is an insecure eight grader who questions everything about herself. She doesn't want to be scared, she doesn't want to be bulimic, but she doesn't know how to change it. Kittle's take on bulimia, the way she calls it a disgusting monster and handles Hannah's situation more than realistically, is the perfect way to express such a prevalent issue with teens, with anyone.
Hannah is superbly fleshed out, with a family, hopes, dreams, and upsets. Each of her 'reasons to be happy' help to see just a little more into the girl that she was and the girl that she's trying to find again. Not only can any young girl relate to Hannah, but anyone will like her, care about her, and hope with every fiber of their being that she's strong enough, that she has the right support system, to get through everything.
Reasons To Be Happy isn't lighthearted and bubbly. It isn't a glimpse into the picture perfect life of a child born of two actors. It's a devastating portrayal of a delightful girl who loses herself, but is strong enough and stubborn enough to not stay lost. It's heartbreaking and will affect its middle grade audience, but also any person who has ever felt lost, alone, or confused.
My most favorite thing about the book isn't even Hannah's reasons - though they are superb - or her family - who I couldn't help but love - it's that her struggle is just that, a struggle. One doesn't just get rid of an eating disorder, just as one doesn't simply kick a bad habit or get over an addiction. You have to fight for it. And Katrina Kittle made me feel like I fought for it with Hannah. We fought, we cried, we hurt, but we're still here. And that's what matters most.
2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted March 11, 2012
Posted January 17, 2012
Posted July 10, 2013
I love this book so far
Im a little more than halfway done and it is so good. I cant tak my eyes off it. I cant even sleep well at night cuz im reading so much. I hate brooke and kevin but love jasper. Hes my favorite character. And this book really got me into wanting to learn more about bulimia. Before i read this i didnt know what bulimia was. I only knew demi lovato was bulimic. Its so sad, a terrible thing.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.