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Shout out to the wonderful Little Shop of Stories for letting me take this ARC! Check them out if you’re ever in Decatur, GA!
Paperweight is an extremely difficult book to review. It’s also an extremely difficult book to read. I’ve never had an eating disorder and it was hard for me to read this. I can’t even imagine how triggering this book could possibly be for someone who’s had (or has) an eating disorder.Paperweight makes you uncomfortable. It pulls you completely out of your comfort zone and doesn’t hold a damn thing back. It puts everything out there in the most raw and honest way possible. And it’s difficult to read it because of that. But it is so worth your time.
Haston has done a wonderful thing with this book. She’s created Stevie, a girl with Anorexia Nervosa, who believes that her disease makes up everything she is. Again, I’ve never had an eating disorder nor have I ever been in a treatment facility. But I feel like Stevie’s story is authentic. It feels real. Stevie doesn’t miraculously get 100% better. That’s not life. The way she changes is subtle, believable. Honestly, Stevie is unlikeable at times. She’s selfish and mean, but her voice felt right.
If I had to describe this book in four words, they would be: Honest. Real. Emotional. Painful. This book is brutal, you guys, and I think you have to be in a certain emotional state to read it. I’m still not sure how I made it through certain parts, but I made it through because Stevie did.
The bottom line: Paperweight is a hard one. It’s hard to read and hard to review. It’s brutal and honest and raw, and I definitely don’t think it’s for everyone. It could be potentially triggering if you’ve dealt with (or are dealing with) an eating disorder. Stevie’s voice is one to listen to though. She’s honest and real, and that’s what scares me the most.
Rating: I honestly don’t know how to rate this one. I’m going to go with an 8, but not for the freaking fantastic, but rather because it’s memorable.