My rating: 5 of 5 stars
It has been a very long time since I’ve read a graphic novel. Honestly, I don’t even remember what the last one was that I read, but I’m SO glad I came across Ink in Water on NetGalley.
Lacy is brutally honest about her battle with anorexia. She is open about the good and the bad decisions she’s made throughout her life and how she is constantly recovering. Those evil thoughts about not being good enough are constantly circling through her mind, but in the end, she has learned how not to be trapped by them. It truly was a beautifully written account of a terrible obsession with food.
There were many parts that were difficult to read, but that unflinching honest story needs to be told. I’ve never personally had an eating disorder, but I’ve come close. I’ve obsessed about calorie counts, carbs, ingredients, and time at the gym. I’ve dedicated journals and notebooks to tracking my body’s intake and output as if it were my job. I’ve taken countless diet pills and tried my fair share of fad diets, none of which worked. I’ve felt the emptiness in my stomach and thought that was a good sign.
I no longer do that, but my relationship with food isn’t always good, because that is what it is… a relationship. I still eat emotionally and those same thoughts that Lacy describes of being too big still pop into my head. And I would have never written any of that, if it weren’t for reading Lacy’s novel.
I think we all at some point or another in our lives have those voices in our head. The voices that tell us that we aren’t good enough. Lacy is no different from any of us in that aspect. She was just brave enough to share her story with the world.
The illustrations by Kettner are amazing, particularly those showing the chaotic jumble of negative thoughts in Lacy’s head. i love that the images are all in black and white and I hope that doesn’t change when the novel goes to print. I don’t know about you, but my thoughts aren’t very colorful when they are negatively focused on my body image. The feelings provoked by the illustrations match those of Lacy’s story. And if I’m being honest (which I am), it was the cover illustration that grabbed my attention. It screamed, “Pick me!”
Lacy’s story is one that need to be told and I’m glad I’ve had the pleasure to read it. This novel is for those struggling with an eating disorder, recovering from one, or wanting to better understand the toll an eating disorder takes on everyone involved. It is also for anyone that has ever let those thoughts take control of their lives even for the briefest of moments.
Thank you Lacy for writing your story down.