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Skinny Audiobook, by Donna Cooner Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Donna Cooner Narrator: Elizabeth Morton Publisher: Scholastic Inc Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: October 2012 ISBN: 9780545511636
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (1,312 ratings) (rate this audio book)
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A remarkable new voice in YA fiction that's perfect for audio.


Hopeless. Freak. Elephant. Pitiful. These are the words of Skinny, the vicious voice that lives inside fifteen-year-old Ever Davies's head. Skinny tells Ever all the dark thoughts her classmates have about her. Ever knows she weighs over three hundred pounds, knows she'll probably never be loved, and Skinny makes sure she never forgets it.

But there is another voice: Ever's singing voice, which is beautiful but has been silenced by Skinny. Partly in the hopes of trying out for the school musical - and partly to try and save her own life - Ever decides to undergo a risky surgery that may help her lose weight and start over.

With the support of her best friend, Ever begins the uphill battle toward change. But demons, she finds, are not so easy to shake, not even as she sheds pounds. Because Skinny is still around. And Ever will have to confront that voice before she can truly find her own.
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Quotes & Awards

  • “Resounding…with wit, compassion, and courage, Skinny will speak to everyone who has ever felt invisible or unlovable.”

    Kathi Appelt, New York Times bestselling author and winner of the Newbery Honor

  • “The best—and truest—depiction of the joys and pangs of transformation I’ve ever read. Deeply moving, totally addictive, utterly fabulous.”

    Lauren Myracle, New York Times bestselling author

  • “Readers will be fascinated by the details of Ever’s surgery, and the permanent sacrifices she makes to accommodate her altered digestive system.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “Elizabeth Morton’s precise and even narration doesn’t call attention to itself. Her style of delivery is appropriate for a story about a girl who desperately avoids attention. While Morton gives little indication of the Texas setting in her vocal characterizations, she imbues Ever’s best friend, stepsister, and other characters with personality and gives listeners insights into the ways Ever misreads people and continually defeats herself. Complicating Ever’s development is Skinny, a nasty voice inside her head that she believes tells her everything other people won’t say. An absorbing and timely exploration of obesity, its consequences, and how one girl manages finds her voice.”


  • “Cooner’s real-life experience with gastric bypass lends the story an irrefutable authenticity as Ever learns firsthand the gory details of both the surgical procedure and the aftermath…A crucial text for any teen considering such a life-changing surgery.”


  • “The surgery is discussed in detail; readers can see this isn’t a quick, easy solution, and that Ever’s problems don’t magically go away. This story will appeal to girls who struggle with doubts and fears, whether dealing with weight issues, loneliness, or lack of popularity.”

    School Library Journal

  • “Drawing from her own weight loss surgery, Cooner’s work explores gastric bypass and its aftermath, while other novels dealing with weight loss surgery (for example, Susan Vaught’s My Big Fat Manifesto) present an outside perspective. At a time when many teens are struggling with personal obesity, overweight, and the definition of beauty, public and school libraries should not hesitate to include this modern tale, only loosely based on the Cinderella story, in their collection.”


  • “Ever’s story is a must-read for every young girl who struggles to accept her own body, and the parents, teachers and friends who love them. Cooner paints a vivid picture of the insecurities that plague almost everyone from time to time, and as Ever learns to face her own inner demon, readers may find the courage to look for the beauty inside themselves (and others) as well.”

    Children’s Literature

Listener Reviews

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  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Makenzie | 1/5/2014

    " This story has got to be one of my favorite inspirational story of all times! I can relate to Ever in some ways. I loved following Ever through her weight-loss surgery and her journey to loose weigh. I also liked how Ever learned to cope with "Skinny." This novel also has another good message: Do not give up halfway through the race! Great novel, Donna Cooner! I am looking forward to many more great reads! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Leonora | 12/30/2013

    " Fabulous book!!!!!!!!!!! I loved it and could totally relate!!!!!!! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Molly | 12/26/2013

    " WOW! WOW! WOW! Loved it! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Adriana | 12/24/2013

    " I thought that this book took a well known fairy tale (Cinderella) and brilliantly wove it into a story about self-esteem, body image, and rising above being your own worst enemy. I wouldn't call it a re-telling or a twist on a classic - it was simply used as a framework for the story of an overweight teen girl who could only listen to the bullying voice inside her head - a girl named Skinny. Ever weighs over 300 pounds. Like Cinderella, she lost a parent and she has a stepmother and two stepsisters. Unlike Cinderella, Ever is not a size zero. She has tried all the diets known to mankind and has failed at all of them. As she struggles through each day at home and at school, there is a little voice inside her head that lets her know exactly what everyone thinks of her. This voice is not kind. Skinny tells her how fat she is, how ugly, how repulsive and how everyone just feels sorry for her. Even after Ever goes through risky by-pass surgery, Skinny is still whispering in her ear that Ever is still fat and repulsive. But Ever pushes forward with the help of her best friend Rat. He has been with her since childhood and is a constant comfort to her. As the pounds drop off, Ever starts to catch the eyes of everyone who overlooked her in the past. But how does Ever know if all of this attention is genuine? Or has Ever's self-esteem been so low that she closed herself off to others long ago? All Ever wants is to be herself - a girl who has an incredible singing voice and who wants to be seen for who she is, not what she weighs. But Skinny is relentless, and no amount of fairy dust, evening balls, or Prince charmings will quiet her down, only Ever can make Skinny stop. I really enjoyed this read and I think that it approaches a serious issue that plagues many people and makes it easier to understand. Note: I read an advance copy. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Celeste | 12/11/2013

    " This was Miss Cooner's first teen book, and she did a fantastic job!! Really good book. It had great messages throughout. Very inspiring. Very clean. Just an overall great book. Highly recommended!! :) "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Holly | 12/11/2013

    " I can't begin to tell you how many of this girl's thoughts I had myself when I was in high school and was clearly obese. She had surgery to "fix" herself, and I took 20 years to do it through calorie counting and exercise. Honestly, although it took me ages, I like my way better. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Audrey | 12/6/2013

    " Skinny is like a Cinderella story (or thats the way the main character, Ever, originally sees it as). She is a 15 year old high school freshman in Texas who weighs over 300 pounds. She got this way after her mother's death, when all of her best memories of her got tied to food, and she began to find solace in the many things that she ate. Now, however, she is constantly aware of how her peers must see her, and she has this voice in her head - which she names Skinny - who reminds her how ridiculous she is and how everyone either hates or pities her. In an effort to win back the attention of her childhood sweetheart, she undergoes gastric bypass surgery, and begins to drastically lose weight. She then is able to mingle with with everyone in schools, make new friends, and get asked out by the boy she liked so much. However, she realizes that she is actually in love with another one of her friends - who had never abandoned her when she had gained weight. She also realizes how much she had been blinded by Skinny's voice, and sees that no one had ever abandoned her - if she was alone for so long, it was mainly because her insecurity had made her suspicious of everyone, and therefore wary of their company. This story goes into many different themes, and is a lot more than the story of an overweight girl who loses weight, or who overcomes her bullies. This is more about readjusting to the change, and coming to realize that those who you think are your enemies really aren't that bad. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jennifer | 12/4/2013

    " Interesting look at an obese teenager who decides to undergo gastric bypass surgery. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Carol | 11/23/2013

    " Great read with a wonderful ending that is truly realistic. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Carolyn | 11/19/2013

    " I could not put this one down. Ever--what a great name for a character--struggles with her obesity. The struggles in her life blind her to the struggles others are waging on her behalf and within their own lives. I am putting this one in my school library. No problem with language or violence. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lindsey | 11/1/2013

    " Interesting story about how weight can shape your view on the world. It was very interesting to read while pregnant and gaining weight like crazy : ) The author had gastric bypass so the story felt very realistic. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Heather | 6/30/2013

    " There is truly something for every girl in this touching story. That inner voice that haunts us all, holding us back from what we could be. I smiled and I teared up- great read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jueun | 6/25/2013

    " It wasn't that bad to be honest. Basically about a girl comparing her as Cinderella a bit. Haha. . . I thought Skinny was actually a fairy or something. I'm so stupid. ._. Oh yeah. But the book wasn't that bad overall~~ "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Maryam | 8/28/2012

    " For what it is and it's target audience, I think it was well done. Interesting take on eating disorders. Solid characters. Well paced. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jen | 6/7/2012

    " An honest look into the mind of a young lady struggling with her weight-- and undergoing gastric bypass surgery. The voice in her head, named Skinny, repeatedly puts her down and rattles her self-esteem. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Karsten | 5/31/2012

    " Teen/HS drama = a tepid 2 or 3 for me. But the voices of Skinny & Ever, judging and being judged, and the showdown b/t them = powerful. "

About the Author

Donna Cooner is the author of over twenty picture books and was a founding member of the Brazos Valley Society of Children’s Bookwriters and Illustrators. She has also written children’s television shows for PBS and textbooks for future teachers. SKINNY was her debut novel for young adults. A former teacher and school administrator, she now teaches teachers and principals at Colorado State University where she is the director of the School of Teacher Education and Principal Preparation. She lives in Fort Collins, Colorado.

About the Narrator

Elizabeth Morton is a native of Louisville, Kentucky, and a graduate of the University of Evansville’s celebrated theater department. On stage, she has been directed by Mike Nichols, Fracaswell Hyman, Carrie Preston, and Joanne Woodward, among others. She has also narrated several audiobooks, including a novel by Paul Rudnick. She lives in New York City.