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The Obvious Game Paperback – January 17, 2013
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"THE OBVIOUS GAME is a fearless, honest, and intense look into the psychology of anorexia. The characters--especially Diana--are so natural and emotionally authentic that you'll find yourself yelling at the page even as you're compelled to turn it." -- Coert Voorhees, author of LUCKY FOOLS and THE BROTHERS TORRES
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Top Customer Reviews
Second, this book contains depictions and discussion of disordered eating/anorexia and cancer and may be triggering for some people.
15 year old Diana Keller is having a really hard time. Her mom is sick, incredibly sick, with cancer and that's a lot to deal with. Her friends are maturing and changing and she's feeling left behind and left out. And she's tired of being Fat Diana. She meets Jesse, a new arrival in their tiny rural town, and they start dating, and she wants to be perfect for him. So she starts doing something... she starts exercising, a lot. And she stops eating.
It... doesn't really help.
This is a pretty unflinching look at ED and the way it impacts people. Arens really digs into the mindset of ED, the obsession, the logic and illogical. It's beautifully written, but sometimes hard to read because it's so meaty. Despite the meatiness, however, there's a lot of humor in the book, and a lot of hope. Diana is, ultimately, lucky: she has some very good friends, and a very close and supportive family. A lot of people notice that Something Is Wrong and do their best to help her. Arens also draws parallels between acceptable ED (young men trying to drop weight to get into a lower weight class for sports) and unacceptable ED (young women trying to drop weight because women are supposed to take up as little space as possible).Read more ›
The Obvious Game is the story of a young girl living whose world is turned upside down when her mother is diagnosed with cancer. Even though she has a great support system through family and friends the pressure of life gets to her and she starts to develop an eating disorder.
I liked how the author decided to approach this delicate subject. You could tell that she knew what she was talking about especially through the teenage viewpoint of things. Diana's eating disorder didn't happen in an instant or overnight. It started slow at first, I'm sure Diana wasn't even aware of what was beginning.
Another thing I have to praise Arens on is how she developed the relationships Diana has. I absolutely love the fact that for once in YA fiction that the main protagonist who is girl has best friend who is a boy with no type of attraction other than friendship. That's a rare gem in YA fiction.
I know we all wish that we could have/had a Jesse and Lin. They are great supportive characters which I'm sure you all will fall in love with! One character you won't like so much is Amanda. She's supposedly Diana's "best friend" while she's actually a mean girl in disguise. Let's hope none you guys have one of those!
I liked reading The Obvious Game, it's such an eye opener on eating disorders. By reading this you might learn a thing or two about how people who suffer with this see things, how they hide it and how you can help. This is a great reading choice if you're a tween or teenaged girl or is the mother of one. I definitely recommend reading The Obvious Game!
I really appreciated how Rita eloquently and respectfully approached the dissonance of living in a small town. Yes, there can be a safe, cozy embrace of being surrounded by people and traditions that never, ever change. But the environment can become stifling, particularly if you are a teenage girl trying to find yourself but are limited by the constraints of a small town mentality that expect you to never change or God forbid, to be different (Not that I am bitter about my own small-town experiences. Never.) Generally, I thought Rita's observations of living in a small-town were spot-on.
As a mother, this was interesting for me to read. I probably had far more sympathy for Diana's mother than I did Diana (Obviously, I will need to become more sympathetic for the Plight and Angst of the American Teenager in about 6 years. Ahem.) Still, I felt it was important for me to read this book as a mother of a daughter. I thought Rita was compelling in the way she depicted Diana's gradual march into her eating disorder. It did not happen over night. And as a mother, I am glad that I read about some of the methods girls use to hide their eating disorders. I had no idea.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
It's a mirror image of what happened to me and my girlfriend. Excellent insight as to what is happening in the mind of someone afflicted with an eating disorder.Published 7 months ago by Johnnybigtime
I began reading this book and have not fully finished it. I can't say I love it, but it has grabbed my attention for sure. I will update this post once I've finished reading it.Published 13 months ago by Lily
Between her mother’s life-threatening illness, first love, and unraveling friendships, Diana has had enough. She wants control, and she’ll take it however she can. Read morePublished 21 months ago by Molly (Conan the Librarian)
Amazing book about a young girl and her struggle through an eating disorder and life. Throughout the course of this book I couldn't set it down. Read morePublished on April 26, 2014 by Lauren Castro
This game is almost nonexistent in the story. Actually the few times they did play it couldve been left out without affecting the plot. Read morePublished on March 30, 2014 by Joycedale
Being an anorexic myself, I could relate very well to this story. I sped through it and was so comforted by the story.Published on December 30, 2013 by Lydia
If I had one word to describe this book it would be "painful." The writing is so good that you feel the pain of Diana. Read morePublished on November 1, 2013 by Brittany
My favorite thing about this story is that it rang so true and I think that it will definitely resonate with its intended audience even if the time period is less familiar to them. Read morePublished on October 10, 2013 by Celeste