By Sarai Walker
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2015. 320 pgs. Fiction
Plum Kettle, overweight, lives a quiet life in New York City while waiting for her gastric bypass surgery. She works from a café answering fan emails for a popular teen magazine, rarely leaves the house otherwise, and buys fabulous clothes that she will wear after she loses weight. But one day, her unfulfilling life is interrupted when a stranger introduces her to a community of women who reject (sometimes violently) the idea that a woman’s only value is her attractiveness.
This book is eye-opening in many ways. What starts as one woman’s journey to self-acceptance weaves in a searing critique of our culture’s treatment of people as objects and eventually erupts into an anti-terrorist revenge fantasy. While this book is definitely a comedy, it is not for the faint of heart (it explicitly attacks the extremely damaging pornographic film industry). This is a must read for people looking to see themselves and the world in an entirely new way.