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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
In Girls Under Pressure, Book Two of her Girls Trilogy, Brit teen writer Jacqueline Wilson paints a thoroughly riveting and shocking picture of the devastation caused by bulemia.
When Ellie gets called fat at a local modeling contest sign-up, she starts to obsess about her weight. Her two best friends don't make it any easier, since confident Magda "doesn't really need to lose much weight" and thin Nadine eats whatever she wants and receives plenty of attention from the boys. Feeling sick and disgusted after gorging herself one night, Ellie "helps" herself by sticking her finger down her throat -- thus beginning a vicious cycle of bingeing and purging. After she sees her emaciated schoolmate Zoë in the showers, Ellie's problems escalate along with her self-delusion: She fools herself into believing her issues with food are nowhere near as serious as Zoë's.
Wilson's book about this eating disorder is absorbing and realistic. Ellie is a multi-dimensional character, whose descent into bulemia is handled with the complexity and honesty it deserves. Teachers and parents looking to open discussions about this problem will find it a helpful springboard, and teens searching for a book about social stress and the power of friendship will find Girls Under Pressure a book they'll want to pick up. A quick read that packs a punch. (Matt Warner)