Author: Jackie Morse Kessler
Series: Horsemen of the Apocalypse #1
Release Date: October 18th, 2010
Age: Young Adult
“Thou art the Black Rider. Go thee out unto the world.”
Lisabeth Lewis has a black steed, a set of scales, and a new job: she’s been appointed Famine. How will an anorexic seventeen-year-old girl from the suburbs fare as one of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse?
Traveling the world on her steed gives Lisa freedom from her troubles at home: her constant battle with hunger, and her struggle to hide it from the people who care about her. But being Famine forces her to go places where hunger is a painful part of everyday life, and to face the horrifying effects of her phenomenal power. Can Lisa find a way to harness that power — and the courage to battle her own inner demons?
Lisa is a seventeen years old anorexic girl who is barely living. She's depressed, and her inner voice is Thin.
When her real friends and family starts to notice something is wrong, she can't believe it. They are against her! Don't they want her to be thin? Perfect?
Her only solace is her bulimic friend, Tammy. She thinks she's so perfect, because she can eat everything she wants and then just go to the bathroom. It seems so easy.
Lisa was such a deep character. I could understand why she felt that way, and I haven't had eating disorders. But it's awful to feel like you aren't worth it. Like you have to be thin, and maybe that way you would be perfect. I think lots of girls could relate to this.
It was really interesting to listen Lisa struggling with her Thin voice, that constantly tells her she isn't good enough because she's fat. Every time she grabs something to eat, she's calculating the calories and the time she must workout.
When we met her at the first chapter, she's trying to escape from her life. But then the Horseman Death rings the doorbell and offers her an alternative, to be the Famine.
Every place she visits as the Famine is different. At some places people are eating too much, at others people are dying of hunger. In her rides, she starts to understand the real meaning of hunger and balance. She starts to, finally, open her eyes and realize the damage she's doing to herself.
I liked that we also get to know the other Horsemen. Death is the first and most important, and I loved him. He's mysterious and amusing, but at the same time he's scary (I mean, he's Death, right?). War was very intense, and Pestilence is just kind of gross. Lisa met them all, and managed to learn something about every one of them.
For a while, I just thought Lisa was crazy and this whole story was an illusion caused by her anorexic dying body. She barely had the energy to think and the pills she was taking didn't help.
It's a very unique story, with some twists, and easy to read. I just read it in a couple of hours, I couldn't stop, really. Maybe because it wasn't obvious what was going to happen in the end, who was going to win, Lisa or her Thin voice.
Overall, I highly recommend this book. It's an original mix of fantasy and modern issues, that I'm sure you won't find at another YA book. I can't wait to read Rage, the sequel, which is going to be released April 18, 2010.