Friday, March 15, 2013

Fun Fact Friday: Publishers Weekly STARRED Review for Mirror, Mirror Off the Wall

"This book should be required reading for those women who struggle with body-image issues—and even those who don’t."
Alright, alright. I know this isn't typical for a "Fun Fact" post (for newcomers, my FFF posts usually cover interesting tidbits from sociology, psychology, history, and contemporary feminist scholars). But still, it's a fact, and a fun one at that. My heart is bursting with pride.

My forthcoming book, Mirror, Mirror Off the Wall, has received a coveted "starred review" from Publishers Weekly. When I heard the news last week I hadn't even heard of Publishers Weekly, but my editor explained that it's one of the main sources that book buyers turn to when purchasing their inventory. Woohooo! 

Here's the full review:

In this brave and inspiring work, Gruys challenges long-held cultural cues about female beauty.
After recovering from an eating disorder, the author set out to show—guided by her volunteer work at About Face, a San Francisco nonprofit organization, and her pursuit of a Ph.D. in sociology at U.C.L.A.—that true beauty is anything but skin deep. 
She vowed to not look in a mirror—or any reflective surface—for a year, and to document how this decision affected the way she related to her fiancĂ© and to the world at large, writing a blog about the experience to keep herself accountable. Gruys’s project is especially admirable given that her wedding occurred during the year in question (and weddings have been known to make even the most humble woman become image-obsessed). 
Gruys admits to her all-too-human insecurities and describes her sometimes-difficult effort to live life without defining herself through beauty. Her story encourages others to do the same. This book should be required reading for those women who struggle with body-image issues—and even those who don’t. 
For a first time author like me, a review like this feels incredibly validating. Will it increase book sales? Who knows. Right now I'm just feeling proud of myself and grateful for those who have supported me along the way.  

Speaking of gratitude, I'd like to send out a special message of thanks to the following authors and scholars who took the time to read and review a pre-publication (i.e., typo-ridden) copy of the manuscript:

Peggy Orenstein, author of Cinderella Ate My Daughter
Caitlin Boyle, author of Healthy Tipping Point
Golda Poretsky, author of Stop Dieting Now
Sally McGraw, author of Already Pretty
Cynthia Bulik, author of The Woman in the Mirror
Natalie Boero, author of Killer Fat
Lynn Peril, author of Pink Think
Autumn Whitefield-Madrano, founder of The Beheld
Lynne Gerber, author of Seeking the Straight & Narrow
Jennifer Berger, executive director for About-Face
Marilyn Wann, author of Fat!So?
Abigail Saguy, author of What's Wrong with Fat?

Okay, that's all I've got for today... Enjoy your weekend!


  1. Woohoo!

    I'll tell you this: in these months before release, starred reviews help determine your eventual print run. The more you garner, the bigger impact they'll have. Plus, librarians and booksellers often are influenced by stars when it comes to ordering.

    1. Thanks Caroline! I am crossing my fingers... :)

  2. Congratulations, Kjerstin!! :)

    I'm so thrilled for you! :) This review has got to feel so good. I want to read your book. Is there a way I can order an autographed copy? I'd be happy to pay for shipping.


    1. Thanks Justine! Good question.... let me ask my publisher about that and get back to you. Once I get an answer and a plan, I'll write a post about it. Probably won't be for another week or two though.

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