Melissa Miller is a cutter. She hides this from everyone, but her ex-boyfriend knows. He knows, and he has told everyone at school. Missy tries to play it cool but when he tricks her at a party and exposes her scars to the school (and thusly the world at large) Missy’s urge to cut rises. Watching her are the three remaining Horsemen of the Apocalypse. War is missing since the new Famine came along and Death has his eyes on Missy for the part.
These books are really interesting. Rich and raw, though this one seemed less… pure than the previous book Hunger
has a great social theme that seemed to come less fluidly than the eating disorders. Jackie Morse Kessler
even admits to having a hard time writing this one in the author’s note. She has personal experience with eating disorders, not cutting. It shows. Both are forms of self-harm but there’s a certain sincerity in the first book that is absent here.
Still, these books do a lot for me. There’s a part of this book that appeals to the 15-year-old girl in me who used to wear black lipstick and a cape to school. This book gets the message out to all of the “freaks” that bullying and social pressures are harmful. Also, the reason behind Missy’s cutting is a great touch – family puts just as much pressure on teens as peers. It reminds me of a stat I heard years ago about the teenage population in Japan. Apparently the suicide rate there is really high during the high school examination weeks. Teens, who are afraid they will under perform, take their lives instead of risking disappointing their families… screwed up but true. This book reminds me to follow your own convictions and not perform according to the wills of others; a solid, powerful message.
4 out of 5 stars. It’s not as strong as Hunger, but it’s pretty good.
– Follow the Reader –