10 best books like Kessa (Steven Levenkron): Second Star to the Right, More Than You Can Chew, Hunger Point, Goodbye, Paper Doll, The Passion of Alice, Restricted, Going Hungry: Writers on Desire, Self-Denial, and Overcoming Anorexia, The Golden Cage: The Enigma of Anorexia Nervosa, Dying to Be Thin: Understanding and Defeating Anorexia Nervosa and Bulimia--A Practical, Lifesaving Guide, Starving for Attention: A Young Woman's Struggle with and Triumph Over Anorexia Nervosa

Second Star to the Right
AuthorDeborah Hautzig
Leslie Hiller is a bright, attractive, talented teenager who leads a privileged life in New York City. She is also a perfectionist. When Leslie starts to diet, she finds herself becoming obsessed, getting thinner and thinner, until she is forced to realize that her quest for perfection is killing her....
More Than You Can Chew
AuthorMarnelle Tokio
Marty Black has retreated from a difficult family situation into the area she can best control, her own appetites. She may not be able to control her parents’ behavior, but she can decide what she will and will not eat. Eventually, she stops eating altogether. Marty is close to death when she finally...
Hunger Point
AuthorJillian Medoff
“[An] unusually honest, painfully funny novel about a tight-knit family’s struggle.”  —Entertainment Weekly

"My parents may love me, but I also know they view me as a houseguest who is turning a weekend stay into an all-expense-paid, lifelong residency, and who (to their horror)...
Goodbye, Paper Doll
AuthorAnne Snyder
(Excript from back cover)
Anorexia Nervosa...
That was the doctor's diagnosis. But seventeen-year-old Rosemary Norton knew better. She wasn't sick; the doctor and her parents were only worryworts. Jason, who said he loved her, was just like the rest of the boys; all he cared about was her...
The Passion of Alice
AuthorStephanie Grant
"In Latin, suffering and passion come from the same root," observes Alice Forrester, the wry heroine of this poignant and sardonically witty debut. And who would know better than twenty-five-year-old Alice, passionately committed to her own suffering--an all-consuming addiction to food deprivation--as...
AuthorJennifer Kinsel
"I thought that once I had lost the weight, I would feel better about myself and maybe I would be something special. Well, I have lost weight, I do not feel better about myself, and I am still nothing special." "Restricted" takes readers into the mind of a nineteen year old girl named Erin. Brought on by the...
Going Hungry: Writers on Desire, Self-Denial, and Overcoming Anorexia
AuthorKate M. Taylor
Here, collected for the first time, 19 writers describe their eating disorders from the distance of recovery, exposing as never before the anorexic's self-enclosed world. Taking up issues including depression, genetics, sexuality, sports, religion, fashion and family, these essays examine...
The Golden Cage: The Enigma of Anorexia Nervosa
AuthorHilde Bruch
First published more than twenty years ago, with almost 150,000 copies sold, The Golden Cage is still the classic book on anorexia nervosa, for patients, parents, mental health trainees, and senior therapists alike. Writing in direct, jargon-free style, often quoting her patients' descriptions...
Dying to Be Thin: Understanding and Defeating Anorexia Nervosa and Bulimia--A Practical, Lifesaving Guide
AuthorIra M. Sacker
I have saved this book for lo these 31 years plus for one reason only: the HORRIBLE MOTHER, Sarah, who wrote the chapter about her daughter's battle with anorexia, entitled, "The Picture of Health: Jeanette's Story." This is a brilliant, albeit, unintentional, dreadfully perfect (think, David Sedaris...
Starving for Attention: A Young Woman's Struggle with and Triumph Over Anorexia Nervosa
AuthorCherry Boone O'Neill
Read this in 1982-1984.
This is a good book, and memorable, just because it is so awful--I found Cherry's lack of insight extremely disturbing and creepy, while at the same time I did not judge or blame her for her disease, and I certainly sympathized with her disease.
What I remember regarding...
AuthorPeach Friedman
In 2000, Peach Friedman, a college senior freshly broken up from her boyfriend, set out to beat the blues by beating herself into shape. Running ten miles a day and taking in as little as 800 calories, she fell from 146 pounds to 100 in three months and was at serious risk of cardiac arrest. What Friedman...
The Anorexia Diaries: A Mother and Daughter's Triumph Over Teenage Eating Disorders
AuthorLinda Rio
"Last night I asked my mom some questions about bulimia and anorexia. I thought for sure she would know what I was doing to myself. How could a mother not know the terrible things her daughter was doing?"

"Tara seems fine these last few days. The questions she asked me the other night scared me....
Empty: A Story of Anorexia
AuthorChristie Pettit
More than five million adolescent girls struggle with eating dis-orders, and more than 80 percent of American women are unhappy with their bodies. Christie Pettit knows these statistics firsthand. As a college student with a tennis scholarship, she found herself eating less and less, compulsively...
Teenage Waistland
AuthorLynn Biederman
“You all believe that losing one-hundred-plus pounds will solve everything, but it won’t. Something far heavier is weighing on you, and until you deal with that, nothing in your lives will be right.”
 –Betsy Glass, PhD, at first weekly group counseling session for ten severely obese...
Insatiable: The Compelling Story of Four Teens, Food and Its Power
AuthorEve Eliot
Insatiable is an astonishingly moving story of four teenage girls whose shame, fear and confusion compel them to binge, purge and refuse to eat in misguided attempts to feel safe and in control of their lives. This incredible, imaginative story, written in episodic format, is based on real case histories...
Kim: Empty Inside: The Diary of an Anonymous Teenager
AuthorBeatrice Sparks
I am so scared.
I feel like I'm silently screaming for help
and no one pays any attention of tries to hear me.
I can't control anything anymore.
It's all out to get me!

When Kim can't handle things, she eats. Then she purges. Sometimes she fasts. She knows she isn't as thin as the...
Solitaire: The Compelling Story of a Young Woman Growing up in America and Her Triumph over Anorexia
AuthorAimee Liu
I first read this book, about the author's struggles with (and apparently spontaneous recovery from) anorexia many years ago. I can clearly remember the circumstances in which I read it. I was in training at a military base in Texas, eating as little as possible and running the six mile perimeter every...
Passing for Thin: Losing Half My Weight and Finding My Self
AuthorFrances Kuffel
An intimate and darkly comic memoir of a woman who does a 180 with her body.

When she was in her early forties, Frances Kuffel lost half her body weight. In Passing for Thin, Frances describes with unflinching honesty and a wickedly dark sense of humor her first fumbling introductions to her newly...
Good Girls Do Swallow: The Darkly Comic True Story of How One Woman Stopped Hating Her Body
AuthorRachael Oakes-Ash
Between the ages of 17 and 31, Rachael Oakes-Ash lost 63kg and gained 76kg on a roller-coaster of body image problems and food obsession. She went through anorexia, bulimia, bulimarexia, gym mania, strict dieting and binge eating before she finally she figured out how to stop torturing herself and...
Anorexia: A Stranger in the Family
AuthorKatie Metcalfe
Katie Metcalfe takes readers through the daily struggle with this potentially lethal obsession. It is a harrowing account of her triumphs and tragedies on the long road to recovery after being hospitalized at 15. We learn of Katie's constant battle with 'the voice' when her pride at improving her health...
Alice in the Looking Glass: A Mother and Daughter's Experience of Anorexia
AuthorJo Kingsley
I'm probably more obsessed with ED books than is healthy, but it's so reassuring to read other people's experiences that are similar to my own. This book was absolutely fantastic - not only did it help me see that I'm not alone or abnormal, but I was also able to read a mother's point of view on the experience....
Eve's Apple
AuthorJonathan Rosen
Ruth Simon is beautiful, smart, talented, and always hungry. As a teenager, she starved herself almost to death, and though outwardly healed, inwardly she remains dangerously obsessed with food. For Joseph Zimmerman, Ruth's tormented relationship with eating is a source of deep distress and erotic...
Hungry: A Mother and Daughter Fight Anorexia
AuthorSheila Himmel
A unique eating-disorder memoir written by a mother and daughter.

Unbeknownst to food critic Sheila Himmel-as she reviewed exotic cuisines from bistro to brasserie- her daughter, Lisa, was at home starving herself. Before Sheila fully grasped what was happening, her fourteen-year-old...
Insatiable: A Young Mother's Struggle with Anorexia
AuthorErica Rivera
A provocative and engrossing memoir of a young mother's spiral into eating disorders and exercise addiction, and her subsequent struggle to reclaim control of her life.

At twenty-four, Erica Rivera appeared to have it all: a B.A., two daughters, a successful husband, a house in the suburbs-and...
Running on Empty: A Diary of Anorexia and Recovery
AuthorCarrie Arnold
I missed my old life, and the only way to find my way back was to close my eyes, grit my teeth, and gain the weight. I didn't have to like it. I just had to do it. (page 143)

The author says early on that what sets her book apart from other memoirs on the topic is that she talks not only about being sick but...
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