Fat Angie

( 1 )

Overview

Winner of a 2014 Stonewall Book Award

Her sister was captured in Iraq, she’s the resident laughingstock at school, and her therapist tells her to count instead of eat. Can a daring new girl in her life really change anything?

Angie is broken — by her can’t-be-bothered mother, by her high-school tormenters, and by being the only one who thinks her varsity-athlete-turned-war-hero sister is still alive. Hiding under a mountain of junk food hasn’t ...

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Fat Angie

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Overview

Winner of a 2014 Stonewall Book Award

Her sister was captured in Iraq, she’s the resident laughingstock at school, and her therapist tells her to count instead of eat. Can a daring new girl in her life really change anything?

Angie is broken — by her can’t-be-bothered mother, by her high-school tormenters, and by being the only one who thinks her varsity-athlete-turned-war-hero sister is still alive. Hiding under a mountain of junk food hasn’t kept the pain (or the shouts of "crazy mad cow!") away. Having failed to kill herself — in front of a gym full of kids — she’s back at high school just trying to make it through each day. That is, until the arrival of KC Romance, the kind of girl who doesn’t exist in Dryfalls, Ohio. A girl who is one hundred and ninety-nine percent wow! A girl who never sees her as Fat Angie, and who knows too well that the package doesn’t always match what’s inside. With an offbeat sensibility, mean girls to rival a horror classic, and characters both outrageous and touching, this darkly comic anti-romantic romance will appeal to anyone who likes entertaining and meaningful fiction.

Co-Winner of the 2014 Stonewall Children's & Young Adult Literature Award

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
High school freshman Angie sees herself the way everyone else does, as “Fat Angie,” until KC Romance, “a model kind of beauty beneath the bad-girl garb,” breezes into her small, conservative Ohio town. Angie is relentlessly bullied at school, as well as belittled by her mother and adopted younger brother. Angie’s heavily medicated family can barely communicate with each other, let alone face the loss and presumed death of Angie’s older sister in Iraq. When Angie and KC bond—first platonically, then romantically—over broken homes, classic TV shows, and their respective troubled pasts, Angie gradually becomes motivated to change inside and out. Charlton-Trujillo (Feels Like Home) offers a hard-hitting third novel that swings between incredibly painful low moments and hard-won victories. The abuses Angie suffers are hard to stomach—her mother can be truly cruel (“No one is ever going to love you if you stay fat,” she tells Angie at one point)—making the happiness the teenager is able to find, both through KC’s help and her own persistence, come as a relief. Ages 14–up. Agent: Andrea Cascardi, Transatlantic Literary Agency. (Mar.)
From the Publisher
Charlton-Trujillo offers a hard-hitting third novel that swings between incredibly painful low moments and hard-won victories.
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)

The voice of a dry and direct third-person narrator works in a story laden with heavy topics, including war, death, suicide, cutting, bullying, and homosexuality.
—School Library Journal (starred review)

Children's Literature - Paula McMillen
Angie is a freshman for the 2nd time in Dry Falls, Ohio because the first time through she had a nervous breakdown pretty much in front of a gymnasium full of people. Now she hides behind a layer of weight that feeds the cruelty of her classmates who call her Fat Angie, an identity she has internalized. The precipitating event had been the capture and nationally publicized videotaping of Angie's older sister, former basketball star of William Anders High, who had decided that she had to help stop terrorism and enlisted in the military instead of going to college. She was never heard from again and the assumption was that she was dead; except that Angie still believed she was alive and still sent her letters and held on only for that reason. Enter new student KC Romance, the kind of gorgeous girl everyone wants to know but who only seems interested in Angie. Next door neighbor Jake, best friend of Angie's sister and all-around popular jock, tries to warn Angie off, but she and KC become friends and life gets a little brighter until her adopted brother pulls a stunt that makes Angie an even bigger target of the bullies at school. The girls' athletic coach at school tries to support Angie, telling her she is special because she never quits, but even the coach is astounded when Angie decides to try out for varsity basketball. There are many things that ring true about this book: the dialog, the cliques, the endless struggle to define oneself in relation to peers and parents. At times though, this book just seems freighted with way too many issues for one book: bullying, sexual identity/homosexuality, loss of a sibling, body imagery/eating disorders, divorce, adoption, cutting/self-mutilation. Might be just the ticket though for a teen struggling with an issue that seems overwhelming in their life right now to see someone win through against such huge odds. Reviewer: Paula McMillen, Ph.D.
VOYA - Laura Woodruff
Fat Angie is miserable, and not just because she is fat. She misses her basketball-star, older sister, gone missing in action in Iraq; she misses her dad, divorced and remarried with a new, perfect family; she misses her adopted brother, Wang, gone weird and evil since their sister left; and, most of all, she misses the mother she never had, having been stuck with an absentee, can't-be-bothered, corporate-lawyer parent who never ceases to remind her that she is ugly. Fat Angie knows she is "special," so special that she somehow deserves the physical and verbal abuse she receives at school every day—that is, until gorgeous, hot KC Romance arrives. KC somehow sees and appreciates the inner Angie, a feat so new and unexpected that Angie hardly knows how to respond. Things become complicated when KC, who has troubles of her own, reveals that she is gay. With KC's help, Angie begins to sort through the mess that is her life and develop strength and purpose. This dark novel by award-winning filmmaker and author of Prizefighter En Mi Casa (Delacorte, 2006) and Feels Like Home (Delacorte, 2007 /Voya April 2004) is heavy on bullying. Teenager Angie epitomizes the hidden anger and self-abusive mentality of the traumatized victim. While she does not completely recover, Angie's discovery of worth and direction in life leaves the reader with a hopeful ending. Reviewer: Laura Woodruff
School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up—A father who abandoned the family. A couldn't-be-bothered mother. An adopted brother who is a criminal in the making. A high school full of peers who relentlessly tease her following a failed suicide attempt at a basketball game. And the only person who really understands her-her older sister-is being held hostage in Iraq and is believed to be dead by everyone except Angie. This is Angie's life. Then a gorgeous, punk-rock chick with a mysterious past, KC Romance, begins taking an interest in her. While the teen toys with the idea that she may be "gay-girl gay," she also begins to channel her pain and uncertainty by making her sister, a former state champion, proud by trying out for the varsity basketball team. Not only does Angie make the team, but she also leads it to a pivotal win. She returns home from the game to discover that her sister's body has been found. An explosive confrontation with her mother following the burial leads her to begin to see her otherwise-cold mother through a new lens. The author ends the story with no resolution in Angie's relationships with her mother and KC, leading readers to forge their own conclusions. The voice of a dry and direct third-person narrator works in a story laden with heavy topics, including war, death, suicide, cutting, bullying, and homosexuality.—Nicole Knott, Watertown High School, CT
Kirkus Reviews
Entrancingly eccentric prose, a protagonist "jam-packed with awkward" and a military sister missing in action coalesce into a memorable romance that's rockier than might be expected--and more realistic. Fat Angie's sister, "the fulcrum of their family machine," was captured nine months ago and shown "on Iraqi television, tied to a chair, blindfolded and bruised." Family, national news and everyone in Dryfalls, Ohio, presume she's dead--except Fat Angie. After a very public meltdown, Fat Angie faces bullying at school and "all kinds of weird sadness" at home, including maternal comments like "No one is ever going to love you if you stay fat." Into this anguish materializes KC Romance, a slang-talking new girl in combat boots and skull-and-crossbones fishnets. She defends Fat Angie; she likes Fat Angie; she calls her, simply, Angie. Angie falls "heart-forward into KC's dark eyes," and the girls are "gay-girl gay" together (their affectionate term). But Angie's tongue-tied, and KC has secret pain; a "sad awkward" keeps cropping up. Like their relationship, and like Angie's lionhearted attempt to emulate her missing sister's backbone on the basketball court, Charlton-Trujillo's prose has a peppery flavor, pointedly carbonated ("You break it. You know? My heart") and wryly funny. Unfortunately, fatness is a misery symbol--it's post–weight-loss, "not-so-plump Angie" who finds happiness. Creative prose and sharp interactions, marred only by some stereotyping; a fresh read nevertheless. (Fiction. 12-16)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780763661199
  • Publisher: Candlewick Press
  • Publication date: 3/12/2013
  • Pages: 272
  • Sales rank: 347,067
  • Age range: 14 - 17 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.63 (w) x 8.06 (h) x 0.88 (d)

Meet the Author

e. E. Charlton-Trujillo is an award-winning filmmaker and YA novelist. She lives in Cincinnati, Ohio.
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 19, 2013

    more from this reviewer

         Fat Angie has a rough start, and I had some issues connecti

         Fat Angie has a rough start, and I had some issues connecting with Angie, but I overall liked this one. 
         It reminds me so much that kids are mean, and how much bullying can really effect us all. It also shows the importance of family, because Angie was heart broken about her sister, and held out hope far longer than anyone else that she would be found. It also speaks to the powerful emotions and their total impact on someone, because when she thought her sister's body had been found, she tried to kill herself too. 
         The coach really supported Angie and that was a bright spot for me in the beginning, especially when I still hadn't gotten a hang of Angie's voice. 
         KC was also mysterious and I liked how she saw within Angie and didn't let the outside effect things. 
         I also appreciated the growth of Angie's character and how she ultimately learned to do what she loved and how she stood up for herself and learned about her as well as those around her. 
    Bottom Line: This is a touching book, with a narrator who grows and learns a lot. 

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