By Lynn Biederman & Lisa Pazer
Delecorte Press, $17.99, 336 pages

In Teenage Waistland, Lynn Biederman and Lisa Pazer illustrate the lives of three teenagers: Marcie, East, and Bobby. The teens could not be more different. Marcie is a brainiac set on Harvard. She comes from a wealthy family with a plastic mother and cheerleader sister. East, or “Shroud,” is a withdrawn, sarcastic girl who dresses in black and is haunted by the death of her father. Bobby, or “Refrigerator Man,” is the star lineman for his high school football team, but is the only guy who cannot seem to get a girlfriend or lose his “v-card.”

“We are Teenage Waistland!”

There is one aspect, however, that unites all three of them. They are obese, and all three decide to undergo the “lap band clinical trial” in order to lose weight. The teens are initially bound together by their age and desire to be healthy, and ultimately by tragedy and romance. Biederman and Pazer craft an original plot that captures the teenage longing to be desirable and reveals the depth of friendship that can be experienced by young people who share their lives vulnerably with each other in tough situations.

Emily Davis