Philomel Books

June 2017

$29.99 AU

344p hc

ISBN: 978-0399173721

This Impossible Light

Lily Myers

from Penguin Random House...

Fifteen-year-old Ivy’s world is in flux. Her dad has moved out, her mother is withdrawn, her brother is off at college, and her best friend, Anna, has grown distant. Worst of all, Ivy’s body won’t stop expanding. She’s getting taller and curvier, with no end in sight. Even her beloved math class offers no clear solution to the imbalanced equation that has become Ivy’s life.
Everything feels off-kilter until a skipped meal leads to a boost in confidence and reminds Ivy that her life is her own. If Ivy can just limit what she eats—the way her mother seems to—she can stop herself from growing, focus on the upcoming math competition, and reclaim control of her life. But when her disordered eating leads to missed opportunities and a devastating health scare, Ivy realizes that she must weigh her mother’s issues against her own, and discover what it means to be a part of—and apart from—her family.
This Impossible Light explores the powerful reality that identity and self-worth must be taught before they are learned.

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15 year-old Ivy’s life is crumbling around her. Her parents have split up; her dad has a new girlfriend now, and her artist mum has withdrawn into a depression and her older brother has moved out. What’s more her childhood best friend, Anna, has just returned from her holiday to Paris with a new friend in tow. It’s the start of her sophomore year and the only solace she finds is in her academic studies, Ivy, aka Smart Girl, finds comfort in the world of mathematics where numbers are a constant and things are in order, unlike her life. With Anna becoming more distant and more into partying and drinking with her new friend, Raquel, Ivy feels left out; taking on extra credit problems in maths does not fill the void and so Anna seeks other ways to control her life – through exercising to excess and limiting her food intake. This soon becomes an obsession as Ivy seeks the perfect model body, but this too spins out of her control…

This Impossible Light takes the reader on the very personal journey of Ivy. Using the flexibility of verse allows the reader to understand and empathise with Ivy in a powerful way. We, as readers, feel her sadness, her loss, her feelings of betrayal and her need to assert control over her life. Relations with her distant mother, her starting a new life father and her hard-working brother are explored in a meaningful way. This is an absorbing read which will have readers engaged with Ivy’s life until the very last page.

Stephen, Canberra

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