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Posted July 15, 2012
This book is the story of fifth grade teacher, Patty. She's not happy with where she's at in her life and thinks that if she gains control of her weight issues that everything else will quietly fall into place in her world. There are a lot of underlying issues in this book: bullying, shallowness, family, romance, and love. But at the heart of all of it, lies Patty's own issues with herself. She doesn't like herself much and that is what is truly hurting all those aspects of her life that she thinks will be fixed by her latest weight loss goals.
There are three main characters which revolve around Patty's life...
1. Her twin sister, Priscilla
Born only minutes apart, Patty and Priscilla are miles apart in appearance. Patty was born lively and healthy, but Priscilla was only 2 lbs when she was born. She's always on the verge of being sick, but Patty sees her as skinny and beautiful. They live together in the rambling Victorian that their mother left them which is a huge money pit. Patty wants to sell, but Priscilla refuses. Priscilla acts as Patty's conscience through a lot of the book. She tries to keep Patty on track with her diet and tries to let Patty know when she's being unreasonable about things. They don't have a happy relationship throughout the second half of the book and that indicative of how bad Patty's behavior descends.
2. Fellow 5th grade teacher, Nick
This guy is the perfect guy. He's a first-year teacher and also the high school basketball coach. He seems like a nice really good looking guy who sees Patty as the catch that she really is, but as you delve deeper and deeper into the book, you get the idea that all isn't as it seems.
If it wasn't for Sam's character, I probably would have DNF'ed this book at some point. Sam is that nice guy that every girl hopes to meet someday. He's completely into Patty and sees her for the beautiful person that she is. But she's so caught up in her own weight issues that she can't see past his even when her heart and body are telling her that he's the guy she truly wants. I ached for his character and how she treats him. It truly did break my heart.
This is a book about transformation...not a physical one, but an emotional one. For probably 85-90% of this book, I did NOT like Patty. She's not a nice person and just because she recognizes and regrets her actions at the time, I personally don't feel any better about her. The fact is...she does some really awful things in this book for all the wrong reasons. She may have regretted them, but she still did them and I have a hard time getting past that.
The book reads really well and easily. I was never bored with it, but I didn't like her or her actions through most of the book and that makes it hard for me to like the book overall. It made me sad to read it and that's not why I like to read books. I don't need everything to be sunshine and roses, but for my personal enjoyment, I need a tiny bit more than this book gave me. I think that I would have been satisfied if the transformation happened a bit earlier in the book, so I could have truly believed and liked the new Patty.
This is one of those books where my issues with it are my own. There was absolutely nothing wrong with the writing in this book. I just personally didn't enjoy reading about this character. But keep in mind, I don't enjoy Oprah's Reading Club books either. I just like books that are a bit more uplifting.
7 out of 9 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 10, 2012
I empathized with Patty from the first page to the last. The ice cream scene was painfully familiar to me. Patty's not a perfect heroine, and not always pretty - in her thoughts or her actions - but always entertaining. There was a lot of depth in this debut novel and a lot of emotion. I especially admired Patty's determination, and I rooted for her all through the book. The ending is one of the best I've read. It's a terrific debut and I'm looking forward to the next James Bay novel.
3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted June 29, 2014
Posted May 20, 2014
I don't want to give anything away but this book will make you think. Everything we do and think is someone's ideal of what we should think is fat thin ugly or beautiful. When everyone is different beauty truly is in the eyes of the beholder. This is a really good read.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted April 23, 2014
Posted March 14, 2014
Posted April 3, 2014
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Posted March 25, 2014
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