Uglies by Scott Westerfeld (Uglies, #1)
Uglies is about self-esteem, self-hatred, and the pursuit of beauty through a dystopian lens, balancing showing and telling to keep from infodumping. This was my first dystopia as a kid, & I’m pleased that it holds up as well as I remember.
Tally is an unreliable narrator in a really good way. She doesn’t really lie to the reader, but her narration is so wholly shaped by her worldview that her thought process informs the reader about the world in a really neat way. She’s not infallible, so when her assumptions about her world are wrong it affects what she lets the reader know.
Most of what I love in this series is set up here but pays off later, so to keep it spoiler free: read this series, read this book. I do need to give the cw that there are serious discussions of body image and negative ideation related to bodies, so please take care of yourselves.
CW for discussion of eating disorders.