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Tyranny by Lesley Fairfield


Tyranny by Lesley Fairfield

In this stark portrayal of a young woman's struggle with anorexia, Lesley Fairfield draws on her own experiences of an eating disorder to give a powerful and candid story of hope and survival. Do I know you? You've always known me, silly... I'm Tyranny, your other self. I keep you thin. One day, horrified by her reflection in the mirror, Anna makes a life-changing decision - that food is the enemy. Her obsession with being thin and beautiful will now dominate her every waking and sleeping hour. Should she falter or show any signs of weakness, Tyranny, her inner voice of reason will be only too willing to push her back into line. Years later, when Anna finally finds the strength to defeat her personal demon, it will be a matter of life and death.


Fairfield treats this important subject with intelligence and empathy, and personifying Anna's horrible self-image in the character of Tyranny is a unique and compelling approach. The simple yet powerful black-and-white drawings do wonders in bringing the book's message to its readers. Tyranny is so important that both younger and older teens will benefit from reading it. Every public and school library should own at least one copy of this amazing book. -- Andrea Lipinski, New York Public Library * School Library Journal * This is a short book with sharp, clear black-and-white illustrations that are full of movement and emotion. The book definitely succeeds in showing Anna's body image distortion - we frequently see the super-thin Anna looking in the mirror and seeing a much rounder version of herself. Anna's alter ego is menacing - at one point literally resembling a monkey on her back - and the full horror of Anna's illness is relayed through dream sequences and some harrowing scenes. There are extremely poignant moments too - I paused for a long time on a page showing Anna with her fellow-sufferer friend Cynthia, gazing sadly into empty space in a park where carefree children frolicked in leaves just metres away.

This simple, powerful story is presented in a highly accessible way, highlighting important issues for all young women. * Chicklish * We see her strengths, her weaknesses, her hardest times are laid completely bare and it's impossible not to feel for her as she tries desperately to claw her life back, after watching everything slip away because of her illness...I imagine Tyranny is perfect for younger readers and teens, while it is entertaining it's also educational without preaching or judging anybody involved...Tyranny is certainly one of the most unique novels I've read in a very long time and it's one that I'm sure will linger in my mind. * Writing from the Tub * I loved this book, and I'm so glad it's been published. If every school and college invested in a single copy, there's a chance it could save a life or stop someone ever endangering their life in the first place. Knowing the real effects of eating disorders, and also knowing the help available, could be the answer to problems teenagers may not even know they have. Stark and courageous, Tyranny is a graphic novel to be read by all. I just hope it reaches those who need it most. * Wondrous Reads * Tyranny gets to the heart of a painful subject with sensitivity. The clear and direct style makes it ideal for younger teens, and I'd recommend it to anyone looking for a responsible and frank introduction to the theme of eating disorders. * I Was a Teenage Book Geek * Brilliantly and realistically presented, Tyranny is a must-read for anyone looking for a better understanding of eating disorders and for everyone looking for a compelling page-turner that is truly a story of triumph and hope. * Overflowing Library * A graphic novel about anorexia may sound a bit weird, but this is funny, sad and compelling as well as being really informative * Bliss *

About the Author

Lesley Fairfield is a graduate of the Ontario College of Art and Design and has illustrated many children's books. Her work concerning body image has appeared in Dance in Canada magazine and in York University's International Women's Studies Journal. Lesley's thirty-year battle with anorexia and bulimia has informed her work and given Tyranny, her first graphic novel, a sharp edge and deep insight.

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Book Info

Publication date

7th February 2011


Lesley Fairfield

More books by Lesley Fairfield
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Walker Books Ltd


128 pages
Interest Age: From 14 years


Graphic novels



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