THE HUNGRY MIRROR
a novel by Lisa de Nikolits
April 2010 / 354 pages / $22.95
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WINNER OF THE 2011 IPPY GOLD MEDAL FOR WOMEN'S FICTION
The Hungry Mirror is the fictional tale of a young woman overwhelmed. Lured by false promise and seeking fickle social acceptability, she starves herself and fast becomes trapped when seeming-sanctuary proves a cage of addictions walled by self-hatred and filled with doubt. Increasingly ill, her marriage cold, her family well-intentioned enablers of mistaken social belief, the young woman realizes the choice is hers; to live or die. A story of compassionate vulnerability and determined empowerment.
In this intelligent, sensitive and candid portrayal of 'the land of thin', Lisa de Nikolits shows us how the commodification of the female body in the market culture can become a pernicious force, imprisoning young women in a terrifying cycle of self-negation.
—Edeet Ravel, author of Your Sad Eyes and Unforgettable Mouth
"Eleven calories more a day can kick one overboard into a sea of fat?" Such are the stomach-churning fears that haunt the fat-phobic, food-obsessed women in Lisa de Nikolits's The Hungry Mirror. Like episodic entries in a food journal, the first-time author's writing style is stripped down, pointed, raw, bereft of all fat. She cuts straight to the bone and slices open the gut-wrenching hurts of a circle of self-conscious (and mostly self-critical) characters obsessed with weight and body image. But de Nikilits' real message is about cravings – cravings for self-acceptance, cravings for love."
—Doug O'Neill, Canadian Living Magazine
—For anyone who has ever wondered why a smart, accomplished woman would starve herself just to feel human, The Hungry Mirror takes an unsentimental look at the lonely world of eating disorders. This gripping tale of fractured self esteem pulls back the curtain on rigid regimens that collapse into chaos over and over again. Played out against a childhood where drastic dieting was a family value, Lisa deNikolits expertly delivers both sides of "a perfect life" that includes a marriage headed over the cliff and a brilliant but unpredictable career. Fasten your seat belts, folks: this is a ride on the psychological and emotional rollercoaster that is anorexia and bulimia.
- Kristin Jenkins, Anglican Journal