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Measuring Up - Nyrae Dawn 3.75 Stars!Another fantastic offering by a YA author who really understands the "teen voice". This book is one that everyone, male or female can benefit from. It's not exactly an easy read because it deals with some tough issues and will have you feeling all the feels.Annabel struggles with insecurities, most of which have to do with her outward appearance and are a result of the way her Mom and other kids at school treat her. She's been made to feel that "big" isn't beautiful so she decides to make a change. That change involves Tegan, the hot "Gym Boy" who becomes her personal trainer. When she first meets him, she assumes he's just like everyone else in her life...ever other skinny, pretty person whose made her feel bad about herself. But the more she gets to know Tegan, the more she realizes looks can be deceiving and everyone struggles with something, even the "perfect" people. As Annabel works toward her goal she learns that strength and belief in yourself is a beautiful thing and while outward appearances matter to a certain extent, it's what's on the inside that matters most. One of the things I really enjoy about Nyrae's writing is how her stories are so relateable. Like every other female on the planet, I know what it's like to worry about outward appearances and I completely understand feeling like I don't measure up to society's definition of physical beauty. That pressure is intensified when you grow up with a literal beauty queen among your ranks. It's no secret that negative words have a way of sticking around a lot longer than positive ones especially when they come from people you expect to find unconditional love in. It's painful when how much you weigh, what size you wear or whether your naturally curly hair makes your face look "heavier" is the focus. After awhile it becomes really difficult to look in a mirror and be happy with what you see.One of the best lessons I've learned over the years is that it doesn't matter if you're a size 2 or a size 22, knowing who you are on the inside and learning to love that "you" is a big step toward being healthy and happy. Beauty is fleeting but the you on the inside lasts a lifetime.