My name is Kimberly and I'm the reader/reviewer behind Wit and Sin. Wit and Sin is a website that provides honest reviews and publicity. I primarily read and review Romance titles, but I also review Urban Fantasy, New Adult, Young Adult, Mystery, and Non-Fiction titles. In addition to Wit and Sin, I am a reviewer for Joyfully Reviewed (pen name: Shayna) and Romance Junkies (pen name: Lily).
Reviewed for Wit and Sin
Conversations with the Fat Girl is one of the most emotionally honest books I’ve read in a long time. Liza Palmer does a fantastic job of conveying body image issues, childhood friendships, and confidence in an organic, relatable way. There are parts of this story that are so raw and relatable to me that they were heart-wrenching and I absolutely loved that. Maggie is twenty-seven years old, has a master’s degree, and her life is stagnant. She works at a coffee shop and gazes from afar at the cute guy she has a crush on, afraid to put herself out there personally or professionally. I sympathized with Maggie and I yearned to see her find confidence, to break out of her comfort zone and go for what she wants.
The other big storyline in Conversations with the Fat Girl revolves around Maggie being the maid of honor in her childhood best friend’s wedding. Olivia and Maggie were a dynamic pair as teenagers, two plus size girls who were outcasts but who also were true and close friends. But after her gastric bypass, Olivia became obsessed with becoming her ideal self, which is a size two with a fairytale past she has dreamed up. Maggie doesn’t fit into the fantasy world Olivia has created for herself and again, I loved the way Ms. Palmer handles this. Maggie tries to cling to a friendship that isn’t there anymore; what is there is something sad and toxic. It’s understandable why Maggie fights so hard for her friendship with Olivia and it’s a great examination of a complex friendship that has so much history but has come to an end.
There is a lot to love about Conversations with the Fat Girl. The emotions it brought to the surface for me make this a story I will definitely remember. So why four stars instead of five? Well, I didn’t expect or want Maggie to be the perfect heroine, but her flaws did tend to grate on my nerves. She can be childish, petty, judgmental, and her attitude frustrated me quite a few times for reasons which would be spoilers. One non-spoiler example is, while I understand why she gets annoyed with her boss’s attitude in some areas, you cannot blame a supervisor for being irritated that you’re always late for work and seem to spend a good part of your shift chatting in the back room. There’s also a romance element to this story which fell kind of flat for me. Perhaps if Domenic had been better fleshed out and their interactions more developed it would have been a more interesting part to the story.
I have a soft spot for protagonists with body image issues and rarely have I seen it handled so well as it is in this story. I also found the exploration of childhood-to-adulthood friendships where two people have grown far apart engaging and relatable. Maggie did frustrate me at times and if it weren’t such an emotionally vulnerable story I might have rated it lower. But when this book shines, it shines bright and I think that’s what makes it special.
FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.