Title: Hunger

Author: Jackie Morse Kessler

Summary: Lisabeth can’t take it anymore. Her mother is never around, her friends are catty, all she does with her boyfriend anymore is fight and the Thin Voice in her head is constantly rattling off calories and corresponding exercise needs, as if she doesn’t know how fat she is. On the night Lisabeth decides to end it all, a delivery man shows up just in time to make her an offer: Die, or work for him. The figure in her room, of course, is that most powerful ‘delivery man,’ Death himself. Lisabeth accepts his offer, and is offered the job of Famine, one of the four horseman of the apocalypse.

As Lisabeth grows into her powers of destruction and witnesses the lives of people in pain, she begins to understand more about her own struggles with control. While this sounds like an obvious metaphor, author Kessler brings it to life in a fast-paced, original way that keeps the pages turning. Even if you hate to read, this book, the beginning of a series about the Four Horsemen, will hook you from page one.

Who will like this book? Readers who like books that combine realism and fantasy. People who are interested in how people endure and cope with eating disorders.

If you like this, try this: Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson. Inside Out: Portrait of an Eating Disorder by Nadia Shivack. Rage, also by Kessler. Two other, very different books with Death as a quirky character, The Book Thief by Markus Zusak and the Sandman graphic novels of Neil Gaiman.

Recommended by: Nicole, Teen Librarian