Vi kin g
Vi kin g
Published by Penguin Group Penguin Group (USA) Inc., 345 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014, U.S.A. Penguin Group (Canada), 90 Eglinton Avenue East, Suite 700, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M4P 2Y3 (a division of Pearson Penguin Canada Inc.) Penguin Books Ltd, Registered Ofﬁces: 80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL, England First published in 2009 by Viking, a memberof Penguin Group (USA) Inc. Copyright © Laurie Halse Anderson, 2009 All Rights Reserved
LI BR A RY OF C ONGRE S S CATA L O GI NG - I N - PU BLICAT ION DATA
Anderson, Laurie Halse. Wintergirls / by Laurie Halse Anderson. p. cm. Summary: Eighteen-year-old Lia comes to terms with her best friend’s death from anorexia as she struggles with the same disorder. ISBN: 1-101-02639-1 [1. Anorexianervosa—Fiction. 2. Death—Fiction.] I. Title. PZ7.A54385Wi 2009 [Fic]—dc22 2008037452 Without limiting the rights under copyright reserved above, no part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in or introduced into a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise), without the prior written permission of both thecopyright owner and the above publisher of this book. The scanning, uploading, and distribution of this book via the Internet or via any other means without the permission of the publisher is illegal and punishable by law. Please purchase only authorized electronic editions, and do not participate in or encourage electronic piracy of copyrighted materials. Your support of the author’s rights isappreciated.
— for building the ﬁre that keeps me warm when the blizzard rages outside.
[Persephone] was filled with a sense of wonder, and she reached out with both hands to take hold of the pretty plaything. And the earth, full of roads leading every which way, opened up under her. . . . She cried with a piercing voice. . . . But not one of the immortal ones, or of human mortals, heard her.Homeric Hymn to Demeter, translated by Gregory Nagy
The King gave orders that they should let her sleep quietly till the time came for her to awake. The Sleeping Beauty in the Woods, by Charles Perrault, 1696, translated by Charles Welsh
So she tells me, the words dribbling out with the cranberry mufﬁn crumbs, commas dunked in her coffee. She tells me in four sentences. No, ﬁve. I can’t let mehear this, but it’s too late. The facts sneak in and stab me. When she gets to the worst part
. . . body found in a motel room, alone . . .
. . . my walls go up and my doors lock. I nod like I’m listening, like we’re communicating, and she never knows the difference. It’s not nice when girls die.
“We didn’t want you hearing it at school or on the news.” Jennifer crams the last hunk of mufﬁninto her mouth. “Are you sure you’re okay?” I open the dishwasher and lean into the cloud of steam
that ﬂoats out of it. I wish I could crawl in and curl up between a bowl and a plate. My stepmother Jennifer could lock the door, twist the dial to S CA L D , and press ON . The steam freezes when it touches my face. “I’m ﬁne,” I lie. She reaches for the box of oatmeal raisin cookies on thetable. “This must feel awful.” She rips off the cardboard ribbon. “Worse than awful. Can you get me a clean container?” I take a clear plastic box and lid out of the cupboard and hand it across the island to her. “Where’s Dad?” “He had a tenure meeting.” “Who told you about Cassie?” She crumbles the edges of the cookies before she puts them in the box, to make it look like she baked instead of bought.“Your mother called late last night with the news. She wants you to see Dr. Parker right away instead of waiting for your next appointment.” “What do you think?” I ask. “It’s a good idea,” she says. “I’ll see if she can ﬁt you in this afternoon.” “Don’t bother.” I pull out the top rack of the dishwasher. The glasses vibrate with little screams when I touch them. If I pick them up, they’ll...