Bauer, Joan. Squashed. New York: Speak, 1992.
Max and Ellie both have weight problems. Max needs to gain a few hundred. Ellie wants to lose twenty. Did I mention Max is the giant pumpkin Ellie’s growing for a local competition? Their journey to weigh-in day is fraught with pumpkin thieves, guard dogs, and frost threats.
What I thought: Bauer is one of my favorite authors. This book, one of her first, is refreshing in the midst of other newer young adult novels. I would even call the book timeless. It’s 17 years old, but the issues Ellie deals with are the same issues girls are still dealing with today. Ellie is such a likeable character. The book is one of struggles. Girl against nature. Girls against self. Girl against others.