Author: Meg Haston
Publication Date: July 7, 2015
Excerpt fro Goodreads:
Seventeen-year-old Stevie is trapped. In her life. In her body. And now in an eating-disorder treatment center on the dusty outskirts of the New Mexico desert.
Life in the center is regimented and intrusive, a nightmare come true. Nurses and therapists watch Stevie at mealtime, accompany her to the bathroom, and challenge her to eat the foods she’s worked so hard to avoid.
Her dad has signed her up for sixty days of treatment. But what no one knows is that Stevie doesn’t plan to stay that long. There are only twenty-seven days until the anniversary of her brother Josh’s death—the death she caused. And if Stevie gets her way, there are only twenty-seven days until she too will end her life.
In this emotionally haunting and beautifully written young adult debut, Meg Haston delves into the devastating impact of trauma and loss, while posing the question: Why are some consumed by their illness while others embark on a path toward recovery?
I was provided a copy of this book for free via Edelweiss in exchange for a honest and unbiased review. Thanks to the publisher, HarperTeen.
Paperweight begins with the main character, Stevie, just starting treatment for her eating disorder. Stevie doesn’t believe anything is wrong with her and considering the girls who are attempting to become healthy “weak.” Stevie is using her disorder to kill herself, quiet literally. She blames herself for her brother’s death and believes that she no longer deserves to live.
While I didn’t connect with Stevie, that doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy this story. Stevie is judgmental and angry at the beginning of the program. She can’t fathom why any of the girl would want to be healthy. We read lots of negative thoughts Stevie has towards her roommate (and other girls at the facility), Ashley, because she is “bigger,” as Stevie puts it.
Like I said before, I had a hard time connecting with Stevie or even liking her in the beginning. While Stevie constantly struggles with her disorder, we see plenty of development. The story ends with her acceptance of her disorder and her willingness to become better. Stevie knows the road to recovery won’t be easy, but she is willing to work.
I wished I could have said I loved this book more, but I didn’t. Honestly I think it boils down to the lack of connect I felt for the characters. It was a good read and I definitely don’t regret reading it, it just wasn’t what I expected it to be. With that being said, I think everyone should give this book a try. Many people have responded positively to this book and this is a book that has the ability to touch people in a way most books can’t.
3 out of 5 stars
Meet The Author
Meg Haston is the author of the middle-grade books How to Rock Braces and Glasses and How to Rock Best Friends and Frenemies. Her young adult debut, Paperweight, will be published by HarperCollins Children’s Books in Summer 2015. While passing the time between now and Summer 2015, she enjoys staying hypercaffeinated, reading (preferably in bed; preferably during a Florida thunderstorm), playing with her rescue pup Dinah, and dreaming up new stories.