Monday, August 11, 2008


Hello lovely readers!

Here it is, the launch week for my second novel from Kimani Tru called SHRINK TO FIT! A few of you would have received copies from me over the past few weeks and I look forward to what you think about the book!

SHRINK TO FIT is the story of Leah Mandeville, a beautiful African-American athlete who is convinced she needs to slim down to fit into her mother's glittering world of well as to catch the attention of the boy next door.

When a tragedy strikes Leah's disillusioned world, will she realize that she's taking her weight loss plan too far? Or will her desire to shrink to fit lead to a tragedy of her own?

This story was very interesting for me to write, not just because of the subject matter (anorexia and bulimia) but also because I have never had an eating disorder. All the research for SHRINK TO FIT came from the University of Washington Medical Center and from real people who I've known to have these disorders.

Did you know:

  • Eating disorders are not due to a failure of will or behavior; rather, they are real, treatable medical illnesses in which certain maladaptive patterns of eating take on a life of their own.

  • Eating disorders frequently co-occur with other psychiatric disorders such as depression, substance abuse, and anxiety disorders.

  • People who suffer from eating disorders can experience a wide range of physical health complications, including serious heart conditions and kidney failure which may lead to death.

Did you know there are entire sites devoted to "Ana" the pro-anorexia movement. These teenagers treat anorexia as a friend who they nickname "Ana" and devote blogs and forums to encourage keeping Ana alive. They discuss ways to keep their calorie count to under 250/day and discuss "Thinspirations", girls like Posh Spice, Lindsey Lohan and Mary Kate Olsen who glamorize "skinny-chic" in the media.

The images are way too disturbing to post on this blog, but if you're interested just type, "Thinspiration" into your search engine of choice.

I was scared as hell when I read all this and that's how I got the inspiration to write SHRINK TO FIT. As for the African-American twist? Eating disorders have long been known to be a "white girl's disease."


With thin "ethnic" celebrities like Rhianna, Eva Longoria Parker and Aishwarya Rai being touted as having "perfect bodies", girls from all over the world are experiencing the same insecurities as the traditional cheerleader types we associate with eating disorders.

To win a signed copy of SHRINK TO FIT, please leave a comment in the comments section.
Dona Sarkar-Mishra
SHRINK TO FIT - also out now!


MarjoleinBookBlog said...

Hi Dona,
I am reading it at the moment!! : )
(thanks for sending!), I am halfway now with it, and I love it already! It is really a great book!

The Compulsive Reader said...

Congrats! Shrink to Fit looks great, and I can't wait to read it!

It's interesting to contemplate, those eating disorders. I remeber hearing about the Ana websites and thinking, "Someone's lying to me."

It's also a little ironic, because I always admired Aishwarya Rai (I probably just murdered the spelling of that beautiful name) in Bride and Prejudice, because she was beautiful, but not skin and bones skinny.

Good luck with Shrink to Fit! I hope all copies get sold out quickly!

Anonymous said...

This looks great! I'm actually in the middle of writing about a girl who is Ed-Nos (Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified) right now. I've been keeping my eye out for other YA fiction that deals with this (but I haven't found much, sadly) to see how others are addressing similar issues, so I'll definitely have to check this out. Looking forward to it!

Chelsea said...

This book sounds deeply fantastic. Congrats on it's release. :)

Marley Gibson said...

What an outstanding, informative blog post, Dona! I'm sooo proud of you getting your second book out and I hope it's a great success for you. Sounds like it's really got a good message for young girls.

Marley = )

paperxxflowers said...

I bet you're excited for the release of your book!


It's a hard topic to write on. I remember reading about the pro-ana sites somewhere, and thinking the same thing as TCR-- someone's making a joke. But they're there.

Marley Gibson said...

It's a topic I wanted to cover in my SORORITY 101 books because it's a very realistic problem on college campuses. I knew of a house on my campus where the plumber was constantly being called in for rotting pipes due to the acid from girls throwing up. I wanted to include something very touching and realistic on this, but the editors wanted to focus more on the positives of sorority life, so I left it out. But it is a huge problem...not just for young girls, but college aged and on up.

Me said...

Wonderful post, Dona. I hope girls all over the world read your book and are inspired to love their bodies because of it! (And you're off to a great start--my local B&N has FIVE copies on the shelves!)

Dona Sarkar-Mishra said...

Ameya, Chelsea and Paper: Thanks for dropping by! It really was a tough topic, but something that is so relevant to teenagers nowadays.

Marley, that is SO sad (about the rotting pipes) I wish girls would realize what permanent damage they're doing to their bodies...

TLC: Yay! I need to make the rounds of my local stores and see who has copies!

MarjoleinBookBlog said...

My review of Shrink to fit is posted on my ya review blog! :)
This book was really realy good!

Marilyn Brant said...

Congrats on the release of this book!! I KNOW you did a wonderful job handling this important topic, and I look forward to reading your second, fabulous novel!

C.R. Evers said...

Congrats on the book! I'm glad to see an honest book about eatting disorders. I suffered with some of these issues as a teen, and still struggle with body image as an adult. A book like this may have helped me back then.


Heather Davis said...

Congratulations, Dona! I'm so proud of you for tackling such a difficult subject that so many teens face. Thank you for doing such a good job explaining Ana in your post -- eating disorders can affect any teen.



Breanna said...

Congrats on the release of your second novel Dona! I still haven't read your first one. But it looks great along with Shrink To Fit as well. I hope that you're having a great release week! Yay for you =)

I love reading books about eating disorders. They're always emotional and everything and I love that. I can't wait to read yours!