Publisher's Summary

In this painfully moving memoir, take a firsthand look at anorexia through the eyes of a young girl. Even in kindergarten, Rachel Richards knows something isn't right. By leading us through her distorted thoughts, she shines a light on the experience and mystery of mental illness.
As she grows up, unable to comprehend or communicate her inner trauma, Rachel lashes out, hurting herself, running away from home, and fighting her family. Restricting food gives her the control she craves. But after being hospitalized and force-fed, Rachel only retreats further into herself.
With a driving perfectionism, she graduates college with honors. But at 69 pounds, Rachel is a shell of nervous and obsessive behaviors that have controlled her life. Years of self-harm and self-loathing have fueled the inner battles between good and evil, health and sickness, and life and death.
Acting on stage offers her moments of freedom from the skewed perceptions she's constructed over the years. But her dream of a career in theater is not enough to save her. What is the secret that will finally unleash her will to recover?
If you, or someone you know, suffers from an eating disorder or is a concerned parent, is anxious about weight and dieting, has an addiction, or wants to learn more about the mystery of how an eating disorder develops, and the multifaceted and complex road to recovery, this audiobook is a must-listen!
©2016 Rachel Richards (P)2017 Rachel Richards
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Nephi Ferguson on 10-12-17

A Gripping Account of Anorexia and Recovery

This book is a fascinating first-person account of the author’s struggle with anorexia nervosa and the years that followed as she worked towards recovery.

Growing up in a safe, homogeneous community with nurturing parents and having a privileged upbringing did not prevent an eating disorder from setting in, and it’s the perfect illustration of why this is a disease that does not discriminate.

There were troubling signs even in kindergarten, but it wasn’t until she encountered her nightmare of a first grade teacher, whose cruelty could only be rivaled by Miss Hannigan from Annie, that things truly started going downhill. Relentless bullying became the norm and continued all the way through high school, leading to feelings of inferiority and a crushed self-esteem. Her experience with a psychotic friend from drama club is especially unsettling.

As time progressed, obsessive behaviors began to manifest and dieting became more extreme. Her quest for academic perfection was a driving force and often interfered with her social life. Family mealtimes turned into a war zone as the struggle between her concerned parents and Rachel’s need to control her food intake intensified.

After graduating high school, Rachel became increasingly withdrawn as college progressed. She did find success in the theater, but even that wasn’t enough to quell her feelings of unworthiness.

The author does a remarkable job of describing her journey through the debilitating effects of an eating disorder and the therapy, both inpatient and out, that followed, and recounting the events that led to her eventual recovery.

Narration by the author is excellent. She brings the different individuals in the book to life through tone and inflection, and you can hear the pain in her voice when she relives the torment of years past, as well as the joy of finding new love and new life in recovery.

The latter portions of the book cover facts, statistics, observations and offer helpful advice regarding eating disorders, making this an invaluable resource for those struggling, as well as their loved ones.

*I was given a free review copy of this audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Nomi on 10-24-17


A fascinating look at an eating disorder. A whole lot of heart and soul went into the writing. Made me tear up a few times. Well worth a listen.

Fantastic job by the narrator. Very well done.

This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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