13 September 2012

Book Review: The Stone Girl

The Stone Girl by Alyssa B. Sheinmel

Format: e-arc
Publisher: Knopf Books
Published: 28th August 2012
Pages: 224
Main Characters: Sethie
Date Started: 6th September 2012
Date Finished: 13th September 2012
Rating Given: *

Blurb from Netgalley:

She feels like a creature out of a fairy tale; a girl who discovers that her bones are really made out of stone, that her skin is really as thin as glass, that her hair is brittle as straw, that her tears have dried up so that she cries only salt. Maybe that's why it doesn't hurt when she presses hard enough to begin bleeding: it doesn't hurt, because she's not real anymore.
     High school senior Sarah Beth (Sethie) Weiss is disciplined. She has never cut a class in her life, has never had a grade below a B+, and has always been a favorite among her teachers. Her college applications are finished and she only ate six Ritz crackers today. But even on days when Sethie needs to eat more, there's always the toilet to make up for her mistakes. Sethie manages to get down to 104, and maybe if she works just a little bit harder, becomes a little more disciplined, she can get below 100. Truth be told, Sethie has more to worry about than her relationship with her body; but the deeper she descends into her disorder, the smaller her world gets and the harder it is to see her way out.

I first knew about this book from Netgalley and I thought it sounded interesting and different to the books I normally read so I gave it a try. I must admit I'm not quite sure what to think about this book.

The cover intrigued me but I didn't notice the bones on the girl as she blended in to the background which I think should have been a shade darker so that you can see her figure. I do think that the cover is this way because when someone has an eating order they are good at concealing themselves just like the cover.

At first I thought I didn't like it and would cringe at the thought of having to start reading it again, but when I started reading it (after I had put it down the day before) I didn't what to put it down which kept happening every day I read it. I liked that Alyssa has touched on such a powerful subject but I felt because I was seeing everything from Sethie's point of view I didn't notice any of the side effects that we all know comes with eating disorder's. Maybe it would have been better if some of the book was done in someone else's point of view so we could tell that there was side effects. As well as an eating disorder she was also using drugs but that side of the story was only touched upon. I just didn't think it was believable and at times I thought it was glamorised. I found that the ending was a bit rushed and would have loved to have seen more into her future I think this would have been a better book if there was another book to it so that we could be on that journey of recovery or lack of recovery it would have made it more believable. I also felt like there was a few unanswered questions.

Sethie was a very vulnerable character as she was very naive and very self conscious. There was times when she had a stronger personality but I felt that it just wasn't enough. She was in a way very smart but that was only in her education but as I said before not believable as how can someone be smart who is using drugs I thought they was supposed to mess with your head and also she wouldn't have had any energy to even do her exams. Shaw, Sethie's 'boyfriend' was just plain awful I couldn't stand the way he was with Sethie he just used her. Janey I didn't really like to start with as I thought she was just going to use Sethie as well but she seemed a good enough friend as she was there when it mattered. Ben I loved I just wish he was in it more.

Overall, I think if this book was more believable it would have been rated higher but this could just be me being naive. It made me feel disgusted with myself which is not what I want to feel like when reading a book. I hate rating books one star but this just wasn't my kind of book in any shape or form.
Don't let me put you off reading this book just because I don't like it doesn't mean you won't.