Girls Under Pressure
Publisher: Random House
Ellie hasn't ever thought much about her size, or how much she weighs - until Nadine has a chance to become a cover girl for a teen magazine, and Ellie begins comparing herself with her friends. Tall, slender Nadine and glamorous Magda are both drop-dead-gorgeous, and Ellie feels like the ugly duckling. She decides to go on a diet and even to take up exercise, much to her teachers' amazement, but soon gets carried away with her plan to lose weight. Ellie's friends and family voice their concerns - but it's schoolfriend Zoe who finally helps Ellie to realise why she has to stop her obsession with being skinny.
Jacqueline Wilson's popular Girls series continues with this engaging and readable story, which touches on a range of issues relating to body image, and will particularly appeal to younger teenage and pre-teen girls. As always, Wilson manages to balance humour with a thoughtful approach to the challenges of growing up, bringing a distinctive lightness to a serious subject.