Big Fat Manifesto

Big Fat Manifesto

by Susan Vaught

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Jamie is a senior in high school and, like so many kids in that year, doing too much-including trying to change the world-and fighting for her rights as a very fat girl. And not quietly: she's writing a column every week in the paper with her thoughts and fears and gripes. As her column raises all kinds of questions, so too, must she find her own private way in her world, with love popping up in an unexpected place, and satisfaction in her size losing ground to real frustration. Tapping into her own experience losing weight, her training as a psychotherapist, and the current fascination in the media for teens who are trying drastic weight-loss measures including surgery, Susan Vaught's searing and hilarious prose will grip readers of all sizes, leaving them eager to hear more.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781599905068
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA
Publication date: 07/15/2009
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 320
File size: 451 KB

About the Author

Susan Vaught is the author of Trigger, Stormwitch, and a number of books for adults. She is a practicing psychiatrist and lives with her family in Tennessee
SUSAN VAUGHT is the author of the highly acclaimed novels Trigger, My Big Fat Manifesto, Going Underground,as well as Oathbreaker, which she coauthored with her son, JB Redmond. She is also a practicing psychologist and lives with her family and many rescued animals in Kentucky.

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Big Fat Manifesto 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 18 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The theme of weight loss is clearly the main topic in this shockingly true book by Susan Vaught. The first sentence of the novel is "I am so sick of reading books and articles about fat girls written by skinny women". I could not agree more. This is written in the newspaper articles titled "Fat Girl". This story starts with Jamie Carcaterra, a high school senior that is overweight. Although she is different than her classmates, she has great ambitions to obtain a scholarship for her articles and be a journalist. She goes on to proudly call herself "fat girl" in her school's newspaper and says that the way society views weight is not healthy or fair. She experiments this by going to a local store that only carries smaller sizes and recording the way she is treated. Not surprisingly, she is treated in a disrespectful and demeaning way. Vaught makes Jamie a relatable character because the emotions she feels are the same that any girl would have for being treated differently because of their appearance. Jamie flaunts her weight and says she sees no wrong in her "curves", yet when the store clerk at the clothing store does not want to attend her because of her size, she goes to the changing room and cries like any girl would. In contrast to Jamie's acceptance of her weight, her boyfriend Kurt is less accepting of his weight and takes drastic measures to change this. Kurt decides to have a gastric bypass surgery even though he knows this could be dangerous. The realism that Vaught uses to describe this procedure is disgustingly true and sheds light on the truth about weight loss surgeries. Vaught describes this whole procedure from the side effects and dangers to the aftermath. Someone that does not know about this surgery can learn a lot from this. During the surgery, Kurt has a complication and stops breathing so the surgery does have dangers. In addition to this, Kurt loses his hair and cannot eat solid food for a while. The part that will really wake readers up is when Kurt froths because since his stomach is smaller now, it digests food faster and comes out his nose and mouth as green froth. A person will think twice about weight loss surgery after reading that Kurt "dumps" after eating a candy bar now that he had this surgery. This novel is the truth about being overweight in today's society. Besides showing the difficulty of being overweight in today's society, it also shows the dangers of weight loss. The theme is obviously the wrong turn society has taken in its view of the ideal body and Susan Vaught successfully shares with us the pain and discrimination that comes with being overweight. However, she speaks on the side of Jamie, the overweight teenage girl. Even though people may look down on her or even overlook her, she is ambitious and driven, happy with the way she is. Vaught makes us all change position to supporting the overweight teenage girl. This also empowers us to feel confident with ourselves. If Jamie Carcaterra is happy with her full figured body then anyone can. Finally a book about fat girls that speaks the truth. Not just the dangers of being overweight, but the real emotions and feelings that are behind the weight. Not just a book about fat girls written by skinny women that are trying to understand them.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I got this book as an advanced readers copy and i thought it was amazing. I am not a fat girl but if i was this is the kind of fat girl i would want to be. scratch that i would want to be like Jamie any day of the week! AMAZING BOOK
kurlykee on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Being an overweight teen myself, I found this book to be funny and very relatable to. Most people won't admit that they judge people on how big they are and turn a blind eye to the fact that bigger people really do have it harder out there in the real world. At times I did find Jamie to be a bit whiney but her jokes and funny newspaper articles lightened the mood of the story, it wasn't all complaining and nagging skinny people. I liked how Jamie has an overweight boyfriend , Burke, who struggles with the decision to get gastric bypass surgery or not, and how Jamie has two bestfriends who are skinny so you get some perspective on bigger people from littler people. I think Vaught did an excellent job of "embodying" an overweight teenager who goes through daily struggles because of her weight.
Spottyblanket on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is a book about being fat. And living in a society that worships thin.Making people aware of the unfairness suffered by overweight people is her goal. She is also hoping her top-notch journalistic efforts will help her win the National Feature Award which could earn her a fully paid college education. From the word go, the main character 'Fat Girl' aka Jamie, proudly shines her 'fatness' at the reader like a blinding sunbeam inviting you to accept her for what she is. My sister commented that she found the main character arrogant, I did as well. I found myself agreeing with everything she said, arguging with her, debating the things she threw at me, feeling her distress, being impressed by her interlect and wondering how I would be if I were her size. The story is divided into Jamie's POV and her FAT GIRL news snipits, where she candidly reveals her throughts on unfairness suffered by overweight people. This story would not have been so stunning if it weren't for the main character's large (pardon the pun) personlity. Jamie is bubbling with energy, wit, sharpness and emotion--not just her but the characters surronding her as well. This book also taught me a lot about Gastric Bypass surgery. Before of which I knew nothing. Vital reading.
df1aemilyr on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
this book shows that life as a bigger person can be kind of hard even though people say its not.. no one is ever alarmed of everything that could happent to them or the awareness of problems at times.. things get harder for her as the book goes on.. then her whole life starts to turn around and it suddenly gets better. she starts dating someone besides burke realizing that she doesnt love burke that much.she gets a lawyer to sue someone because they were discriminating against her article..
ewyatt on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Jamie is determined to go to college and wants to win a writing fellowship. She writes a column called the Fat Girl Manifesto. She rants and rails about the trials and tribulations of being fat in our society. Within the column she also explores her boyfriend's weight loss surgery. In her personal life, she feels overextended and torn between her boyfriend and a good friend, Heath, fellow editor of the school paper.Some of the characters are a little flat and the tone of the book is a little preachy at times. Although I did enjoy Jamie's exploration of what and who she is and wants to be.
eenerd on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Thoroughly enjoyed this journey into the heart and mind of an overweight high school senior named Jaime Carcaterra. Vaught did a great job with the characters in this story--especially Jaime and her parents. The way Jaime seems so forceful in her convictions, until you see that she is in reality torn up by them. This book does a great job of talking about how difficult it is to be ourselves and even moreso to love ourselves, and that, even if we appear to do so to the rest of the world, it may be just an illusion. Awesome awesome book.
chibimajo on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Jamie is a fat girl and has decided to column her fat girl life and thoughts in her school newspaper in an effort to win a scholarship. She writes about what it means to be fat, her boyfriend's gastric bypass surgery and other "taboo" topics for fat people. This book was fairly predictable. Jamie is a fairly likeable character, with her own insecurities and strengths. The romance is so very, very obviously predictable it really distracted from the rest of the book. Would have liked to spend more time on the other aspects of Jamie, and much less on her romance. Liked Earth, My Butt and other Big Round Things better.
df1a_allyvk on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I thought this book was decent. It was a little sad at some parts and very graphic at others. The descriptions of gastric bypass surgery and it's side effects grossed me out. It was not a bad book though.
abbylibrarian on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Jamie is a goal-oriented high school senior. She writes for the school paper. She's in the school play. She has a couple of caring, passionate best friends. She has a loving boyfriend. She wants to go to Northwestern. Oh, yeah. And Jamie's fat. Determined to win a journalism scholarship, Jamie starts writing a new column for the school paper: Fat Girl. She wants to educate the community about what it's like living in a world that doesn't fit you, in a country that is so sensitive about racial discrimination but constantly discriminates based on size. And Jamie's column gets more attention than she ever thought it would. When Jamie's boyfriend Burke decides to get bariatric surgery to help him lose weight, Jamie's world is turned upside down. She worries about his health, about the risks of the surgery, and about what role she will play once he's slim and trim. I found Jamie's voice to be compelling and raw and I couldn't put this book down. Graphic descriptions of bariatric surgery and its least desirable side effects may be off-putting for some.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
From one more fat girl... it’s nice to know I’m not the only one that holds my “truth” close to my heart. Sharing is never easy & never will be. This book & the authors honesty really touched me.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am very glad i read this book
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TeensReadToo More than 1 year ago
Does the world discriminate against fat people? Jamie Carcaterra thinks they do, and she is out to change things.

Proudly calling herself "Fat Girl," Jamie has started a feature column by the same name in The Wire, her school newspaper. Making people aware of the unfairness suffered by overweight people is her goal. She is also hoping her top-notch journalistic efforts will help her win the National Feature Award which could earn her a fully paid college education.

With the help of her friends, Freddie and NoNo, Jamie has planned an attack on a popular clothing retailer offering clothes in sizes designed for the very thin. Jamie weighs in at over 300 pounds, and her plan is to enter the store, request an item, and demand a fitting room to try it on. Armed with her notepad and a video camera, she gathers material for her column.

Jamie is comfortable with her size. She doesn't try to disguise the fact that she is fat. Her mother is fat. Her father is fat. Her boyfriend, Burke, is fat, but not for long. Another issue Jamie explores in her feature column is the fact that Burke has decided to undergo gastric bypass surgery. The risks are enormous (pardon the pun) but Burke tells Jamie he is tired of it all. She agrees to support him, but will things ever be the same?

Teen readers of all sizes will relate to Jamie. She has lots of friends, is active in school activities, and is feeling the stress of senior year with ACT pressure, college applications, and financial concerns. She candidly reveals her thoughts and feelings about being fat in a world that worships those who are thin.

BIG FAT MANIFESTO is a must-read. Susan Vaught offers everything in this book. She has great characters, humor, roller-coaster emotions, and romance along with interesting statistics and opinions about being overweight. I hope she will give us another peek into the life of Jamie Carcaterra some day.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Ok, this book was very entertaining and the author writes very well. I laughed a lot. Now, as an 8th grade teacher, I am not going to put it on my shelves. It has too much foul language.