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Skin Paperback – 2 Jan 2006


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Product details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Egmont Books Ltd (2 Jan. 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1405223286
  • ISBN-13: 978-1405223287
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 2 x 19.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,334,663 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By mum_of_twins on 11 Jan. 2007
Format: Paperback
Not ANOTHER book about anorexia, I groaned to myself when I read the blurb. Oh, well, it might encourage me to start my diet, I thought. And bought it. And I'm glad I did, but I'm going to be honest - part of me wishes I'd never read it, because it's humbled me. Let me explain.

Donald (Donnie) is the narrator of the book. The book opens with him finding his sister dead. He says she's starved herself to death - fat guys in the locker room have bigger boobs than her. But to be honest, all of that kind of gets forgotten - or at least pushed to the back of the mind - when we meet Donnie and his sister Karen.

I've never met Donnie, and yet I can see him. That's how real he becomes in Vrettos' book. He's the younger brother of Karen, who clearly mothers him. She makes him wear his earmuffs, drags him outside to safety when their parents start yelling, and makes sure he's doing his homework. Far from being annoyed by this, Donnie clearly adores Karen, although this adoration is tempered with "real" brother/sister moments - him sitting on her and pretending to drool on her face, her grabbing his leg as he practices his karate kick on the drive, bursting out laughing at jokes their parents just don't get. And these moments make you smile too, even as the horror engulfs you.

Poor old Donnie doesn't have it easy. His parents are strange. Mom is caring but ineffective, resorting to screeching and crying, while Dad clearly has "Izzoz" of his own. We find out, during the book that Donnie and Karen's father was brought up by his gran in a retirement home filled with old women. This is largely the crux of the problem - just as the father has no idea how to be a man, husband, father, he passes this on to Donnie.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By jane on 13 Feb. 2010
Format: Paperback
This book is so beautifully written I cannot recommend it enough. Written through the eyes of the Brother as he watches his sister fade away and his parents marriage deteriorate, he is like a shadow in their lives and stays silent about his own problems. Sensitive and alert, he walks us through the pain, the sadness, of this complicated problem. I laughed, was horror struck, saddened and totally absorbed. I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves reading.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 5 Feb. 2006
Format: Paperback
Skin is gripping and is hard to put down. It is funny when appropriate but bears a strong message about anorexia. It has a realistic portrait of what being at school is really like if your not popular and have a growing problem about a shrinking sister. I definatly reccomend this book for teenagers and adults!
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 3 May 2006
Format: Paperback
For some reason I had no idea what to expect from this book from the blurb on the cover, I thought it was going to be a funny tale of family life. I couldn't have been more wrong. Although it definitely has its comic moments, it is a heartrending tale of anorexia, set against the background of a dysfunctional family. The story is told by Donnie as he tries to make sense of his sister's struggle with anorexia, whilst at the same time having a thoroughly miserable time because he doesn't fit in at school. His parents' constant fighting is ripping the family apart and might be a contributing factor to his sister's illness.

This book had me in floods of tears, but also somehow managed to have an upbeat ending and a positive message. It also helped me to understand more about anorexia, and made me feel the deepest sympathy for the victims' families. I highly recommend this book both to teenagers and their parents.
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