I applaud you if the title of this book doesn’t immediately exhaust you. Seriously, I am not joking. This novel deserves the “Longest Title” Award. Although I can’t reveal whether or not the title is fitting, I will reveal that there are thirty-seven letters in the title of this book. Hand-counted and then verified by Microsoft Word. All this reveals is my immaturity. You’re welcome.
Most people feel overweight, plump, or chubby at some point in their lives. For sixteen-year-old Emery Jackson, she’s felt fat every single day of her life. To make matters worse, she lives is California with a very fit family. In fact, her sister is an underwear model. I mean, being compared to a sister like that is absolutely hellish. Emery’s been stuck in a rut that she thinks she can’t get out of. However, everything changes when her mother signs her up for Fifty Pounds to Freedom, a reality show about weight loss. Emery has fifty days to lose fifty pounds. The reward? A million bucks. What could possibly go wrong? As it turns out, everything.
My favorite thing about this book is that it’s incredibly easy to relate to, despite such a far-fetched plot. Emery is incredibly honest about the struggles of weight loss and adolescence. I enjoyed her sarcasm, humor and wit as she faced challenges in her life. However, she’s not the only one to reveal her struggles. This story shows that every single person is struggling in some way, even those who seem to have it all. For me, it’s extremely important for every character to be flawed in some way. After all, no one is perfect.
This being said, How I Got Skinny, Famous, and Fell Madly in Love is also far from being perfect. The crazy twists in the plot aren’t entirely resolved. Even after finishing the book, I’m still confused as to what will happen in Emery’s world. The conclusion was much too abrupt; I didn’t feel a sense of closure. I’m just hoping there will be a novella or something that will wrap things up. I don’t think it will happen though.
Returning to the weight loss aspect of this book, I cannot overemphasize just how important the lesson is. I commend the author for having Emery make that choice. Not only does it change Emery’s life, but I guarantee that it will change the life of at least one reader.
And that is the true point of literature, change.
Rating: 5 out of 10
Publisher: Running Press Kids (April 22nd, 2014)
ISBN #: 9780762450145
Length: 272 pages (Paperback)