Running Lean

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Six months ago he’d felt like part of him had been buried with Michael. Then Stacey stepped up to fill that gaping hole inside him a little Not fully, and not in the same way, but she’d brought him to a place where he could smile again.
And then…and then… the anorexia, like a bony finger clawing, clawing, clawing, scratched Calvin’s scars, reopened the wound until he could feel the pain pouring out again.
I can’t do this. I need her.
 It was his fault. He’d been pushing her, making demands of her, expecting her to change
 – to save her life!

Book: Running Lean by Diana L. Sharples, Blink Publishers (Zondervan), 2013
734970: Running LeanGenre: Realistic Fiction
Target Audience: Girls and Boys 14-18
Subjects: Anorexia, Trust in God, Family Relationships, Dating Relationships, Friendship
Summary: He’s all she really has. Supposedly she has a friend and a loving family. But not really. He’s the only one willing to truly see her, see beyond his own selfishness, see the hurt inside of her. She’s not all she has, but she’s the one who brought him out of the pit of sorrow he was drowning in after his brother’s death. Love is a big word, not meant to be used casually. It describes their relationship though. Their relationship is on shaky ground though. Something has come between them. Something so big, so scary, neither one has any clue how to get around it. They’re getting closer and closer to empty, heading straight for destruction. And there doesn’t seem to be anywhere to turn for answers.
Notes: Anorexia is a serious issue that many young girls struggle with to some degree or another. Many feel unsatisfied with their appearance and as a result, unsatisfied with themselves overall. And many seek to control their weight in the hopes of changing who they are. In this story the young girl is desperate to be viewed as beautiful and terrified of going back to the days of her childhood obesity. It shows her struggles with self-image. It also shows her boyfriend’s struggle to figure out how to help her. He has to choose between saving their relationship or saving her very life. It also shows how blind many can be to the real issue. Her dad views it as a simple problem that a bit of discipline will get rid of. Her friend views it as an example of strength and determination to make something of herself. Calvin’s mom just assumes Stacy’s parents will take care of the problem and it’s best to not get involved. Only Calvin recognizes the seriousness of her illness and the power it holds over her. Even he doesn’t know how to help though. This book is designed to lay out a picture of all the different sides of it – bring awareness to the issue.
There are some strong spiritual elements at the end of it. Both Calvin and Stacy learn that only God can give them the strength to get through this. Stacy recognizes that she is truly genuinely loved by God. Stacy has a near-death vision of Christ saying this isn’t what He wants for her, that her life isn’t done yet.
Spiritual Content Recommendation Scale: 4/5
Reviewer: J:-)mi

Psalm 18:32 – It is God who arms me with strength and makes my way perfect.

Thank you to the author for providing me with a free review copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion. 


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