YA Book Review: Artichoke’s Heart

Cover of "Artichoke's Heart"

Cover of Artichoke’s Heart

Artichoke’s Heart by Suzanne Supplee

Artichoke’s Heart was originally one of my picks for the 48 Hour Book Challenge, but I caved and read it yesterday.  The story is about a girl named Rosemary who struggles with her weight.  For her, walking across the cafeteria, or passing the popular girls in the hallway are just obstacles that she must get through during a day of high school.  She turns to junk food for comfort and although her family has good intentions, they fail to give her the support she needs to successfully lose weight.

Somehow, Rosemary seems to break out of her rut and slowly begin to change her habits.  As she starts to lose weight, she begins to open up to other people in her life.  She starts dating her crush and forms a friendship with a girl who supports her efforts to improve herself.

Many characters in the book have their own issues, and Rosemary slowly begins to see that she is not the only one with a challenge to overcome.  Rosemary’s mother is diagnosed with Hodgkins’ disease; her aunt is upset about her love life; and her seemingly perfect best friend has a difficulities in her social life.

This book is well-written and Rosie is so endearing and sympathetic that the reader finds him/herself cheering her on.  My only gripe about this book is Rosie’s method of weight loss.  She starts out using a shake product (similar to Slim Fast) and then graduates to solid food, but limits her diet to what she thinks of as “healthy foods”:  celery, carrots, rice cakes, and tuna.  She is successful in terms of losing weight, but it’s not healthy to eat that way for the long term.  For young girls who identify with Rosie and her weight problems, it seems like bad nutritional advice to encourage teens to eat next to nothing and run 3 miles every morning.

Anyone who has struggled with weight loss in high school or just enjoys a fun story filled with colorful characters should try Artichoke’s Heart.

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4 Comments

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4 responses to “YA Book Review: Artichoke’s Heart

  1. This book sounds really endearing, I just worry about the message “get skinny=get happy.” I think I will read it though. Good luck with your 48 hour readathon – I’ve never done one of those, but I want to soon!

  2. Thankfully, there are characters who support Rosemary no matter what, but the emphasis on weight loss at any cost still bothered me. I hope you enjoy the book!

    Thanks for your encouragement! I am looking forward to the readathon-what a great way to read all weekend and not feel the least bit guilty about it (it is for charity after all…) 🙂

  3. Hi, Abby,

    Would you consider reviewing “Time Fighter: The Shifter Prince,” a YA Kindle novel just released by the Lone Knight Publishing?

    In the country of Poslopia, the last totalitarian country of Europe, the resistance leader is about to get executed. The only people who can save her are 17-year-old Yaroslav, a shape-shifter, a trouble-maker and the scion of an old dynasty, and Amber, an American exchange student and a time traveler.

    Together, they go back in time to find the ancient True Shield that can help them to liberate the captive. They have to fight the President-Prime Minister for Life, Beloved Dear Vladislav Petrovic and his secret police. The clock is ticking. Time is of the essence.

    By the author of My Life at First Try (Counterpoint Press), reviewed by People magazine, Boston Globe, San Fransisco Chronicle and The Washington Post.

    BTW, I’ve published Aimee Bender in my magazine Vestal Review.

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