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Overweight Hayley is tired-of Southern California, "where there are more gym memberships than library cards," of her mother's nagging about her diet and, especially, of being told she has a pretty face, a "veiled insult" if ever there was one. When her parents send her to spend the summer with friends in Italy, hoping to help her escape the pressure over body image, she is thrilled. Hayley does discover a healthier, happier way of life in Umbria; however, Hogan (Perfect Girl ) casts a rose-colored lens on the experience (in addition to having her own beautiful cottage and easy-going chaperones, Hayley falls in love with a turquoise-eyed boy who says things like, "I can't look at you without knowing you will soon leave me"). Even so, Hayley commands a sharp wit and delivers smart insights. Like Hayley, readers will question an American culture that is both thin-obsessed and dependent on fast food and cars, but this novel is not so much issues-oriented as a conduit of vicarious pleasure. Ages 14-up. (Apr.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.