An Anorexic's Alphabet
Gail Pool

Anorexia affects millions of people worldwide, most of them women. A dangerous yet fascinating syndrome, it has been the subject of many books—some medical, some memoir, many self-help. Yet anorexia remains mysterious.

Although I've written for national publications and published three books, till now I've never addressed the eating disorder I've lived with for most of my life.

My graphic chapbook, An Anorexic's Alphabet, takes readers inside the distorted, intellectualized, defensive, little-understood, and eerily intriguing mindset of the anorexic. Through text, expressive fonts, and illustrations—all infused with an edgy humor—the narrative focuses on the driving issues of the anorexic: identity, body image, food, and, most centrally, control. The (unreliable) narrator may be nameless, but as she exposes her inner life, she becomes a vivid presence.

My aim is not to explain but to unveil an anorexic's world through her words, thoughts, visions, and benighted sense of beauty. I believe that this book will make compelling reading for anorexics and—perhaps even more—for those who struggle to understand, help, and live with them.

An Anorexic's Alphabet

Please take a look. Take your time. There's a lot happening on every page.

I was born in New York City, I attended Little Red School House and Hunter College High School, and I concentrated in Ancient Greek at Harvard. For many years, I taught writing at the Radcliffe Seminars and at Emmanuel College. My book columns, reviews, and essays have appeared in The New York Times, The Christian Science Monitor, The Women's Review of Books, Columbia Journalism Review, and many other publications. I live with my husband in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and in Sanibel, Florida.

For information about my previous books, please see my Authors Guild website:

Lost Among the Baining: Adventure, Marriage, and Other Fieldwork--a cross-cultural travel memoir (and a love story) about a life-changing journey to Papua New Guinea that reviewers called "provocative," "inspiring," "compulsively readable," and "laugh-out-loud funny."

Faint Praise: The Plight of Book Reviewing in America--the first and still the only book to take an in-depth, historical, and tough look at this perennially troubled field. Critics called it "passionate," "thought-provoking," and "mandatory reading."

Other People's Mail: An Anthology of Letter Stories--a widely reviewed Editor's Choice selection at the Chicago Tribune that critics called "entertaining," "moving," and "wickedly absorbing."

My books are available on Amazon and both Lost Among the Baining and Faint Praise are available as Kindle editions and as ebooks at Smashwords.

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Read my travel-book reviews on my blog: TraveLit