I obviously knew what kind of book this was going to be. It is also the kind of book that does really well in a public library and, based on professional experience, less so in a school library – too many eyes.
Virginia Shreves considers herself and larger-than-average girl and sometimes believes she was switched at birth, since the rest of her family is “perfect family”, fit or athletic, bilingual (and she can barely conjugate her verbs), golf club swinging, art museum connoisseurs, and high achieving. While she would much rather sit at home munching on chips and watching TV, or writing emails to her best-friend, Shannon.
Although Virginia’s mom is a teen-therapist, she just doesn’t do so well with her own. So when she is brought to see a new doctor the topic of weight-loss versus just being happier and healthier comes up. Virginia is reluctant to change her ways, but is constantly striving for her parents to accept her that she agrees to give her mother’s “rabbit-food” diet a try.
Needless to say, Virginia starting losing weight. Her dad started “complimenting” her on her progress, and her mother was starting to look at her approvingly when Virginia would turn down a slice of cake or a cookie.
Everything changed when Virginia’s brother is accused of date rapping a girl in his dorm-quad. Everything went down hill, Virginia started to eat her feelings and her “fat pants” were getting tighter than usual. The family was falling apart. And Virginia had lost control of herself. So when her best friend invited her to Seattle for Thanksgiving, and after the constant denied requests by her parents, Virginia took the chance and purchased her own ticket – and basically told her mom that there was nothing she could do about it.
From then on Virginia started seeing things in a whole new light.
Fortunately this book is a little older so spoilers aren’t my greatest concern 😉
Overall, it’s a happily ever after style story. Virginia realizes that if she cares more about how she feels about herself and less about what others think than she has a better chance of allowing herself to be happy. She took her rose-colored glasses off and she could finally see what kind of life she was truly living. It kind of reminds me of the book My Big Fat Manifesto by Susan Vaught, except the main character is an overweight teenager who exudes confidence, whereas Virginia is very insecure about her weight.