"My Sister's Bones works a miracle... funny and idiosyncratic, elegant and simple... Hanauer gives power and dignity to the subject of anorexia."
--The Village Voice
My Sister's Bones
(1996, Delta Trade)
Against a backdrop of malls and emerald-carpet lawns, Cassie Weinstein is slowly killing herself. And there seems to be nothing her younger sister Billie can do to stop her. In her first novel, Cathi Hanauer traces Billie's moving, sometimes-painful emergence from her sister's shadow and offers a sensitive handling of a devastating disease: anorexia.
Overwhelmed by her surgeon father's relentless pressure to raise her SAT scores and be a stand-out at school, Cassie literally tries to make herself disappear. Meanwhile, Billie finds solace in an unlikely friendship with Tiffany, a working-class transplant from Brooklyn, and a surprisingly tender relationship with the school's star athlete. With Cassie's life seemingly hanging in the balance, Billie musters the courage to confront her parents' denial—and try to save her sister's life.
In My Sister's Bones, Cathi Hanauer strips away the veneer of a "perfect" family to reveal the subtle cruelties and concessions of love, and creates a portrait of a remarkable young woman who must abandon the safety net of illusion as she reaches for adulthood.
Praise and Reviews:
"Hanauer has her finger precisely on the pulse of the rising generation, and she writes with a sensitivity and authority regarding teen experience that is unrivaled among her literary contemporaries."
--The Capital Times (Madison, Wisconsin)
"Uncommonly insightful...re-creates the roller-coaster joys and pains of adolescence."
--Time Out New York
"The struggles over control in Hanauer's neatly executed first novel go straight to the heart."
"Painful and funny, frustrating and touching...Hanauer writes with honesty and warmth."
--The Charleston Post & Courier
"A poignant...lively and humorous novel, with characters so believable you expect them to rise up off the page."
--Elizabeth Berg, author of We Are All Welcome Here
"Riveting...A persuasive, well-rendered and rich first novel about family..."
"A beautifully written first novel."
"The characters are human, humorous and immensely likable in this tender, well-told...story."
--Detroit Free Press
"A delightful novel: warm, witty, and wonderfully compassionate."
--Vivian Gornick, author of Fierce Attachments
"A moving story of awakening sexuality and the shattering of innocence."
--Caldwell Progress (N.J.)