A Note From The Editor:
First, let me tell you that we’re so excited to have a different outlook on the new book from blogger Brittany Gibbons, Fat Girl Walking – a man’s point of view. Although this book has thus far been seen as a bible for women who struggle with body issues, these issues can affect men, as well.
I’m lucky enough to know Brittany ‘in real life’ as we’re from the same hometown, though I’m not the only person in her life that her words of encouragement have impacted – men and women alike.
You’re probably wondering why a man is reviewing a book that was so clearly written for women. For starters, you’re not the boss of me. Secondly, body positivity is universal. If you’ve ever been given a sideways look while eating in public, had a complete stranger offer advice on how to “fix” you, or skipped a school function because you’re afraid of how your size will deflect ridicule to your child; you’re in this group, and this book is for you. Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, here’s why EVERYONE should read this book; men, women or otherwise.
I flipped to the first page expecting all the things I have come to appreciate from reading Brittany’s blog, following her social media posts, and meeting her in person: willful irreverence, period-specific pop culture references, and slightly cringe-worthy discussions of the hornet’s nest that is the female existence (read: periods, boob sweat, and the like).
And I got it.
I got all the hilarious, foul-mouthed, sexy, movie reference-fueled perspectives and narratives that I was hoping for in a Brittany Gibbons book. As a fan, I’d have been satisfied with that. What I didn’t expect was a series of life stories, experiences, and supremely human moments, all of them told with such a stark honesty that I found myself tearing up on a crowded airplane wondering what the hell was happening with this “comedy” book I was reading.
Reading Fat Girl Walking as a man is like spying on all girls sleepover; not the adolescent fantasy replete with baby doll nighties and pillow fights, but the real, raw, unguarded emotion that only women communing with women feel comfortable sharing.
This book will make you cry. There are moments of such humanity and realness that the only response that feels natural is a physical one.
This book will shock you. Not in the normal boring, “did she really just say that” kind of way, but in the devastating frankness and transparency Brittany shows in the recounting of her life experiences, her rise to “internet famous”, and the long hard road behind her as she defined and refined her message into becoming the resounding voice, smirking face and gorgeous body at the front of this movement
This book will make you cry. There are moments of such humanity and realness that the only response that feels natural is a physical one. Brittany weaves these between humor and levity in a way that never lets you fall too far. I found myself cheering for her and screaming at her as she fumbled through the missteps of her youth and early adulthood as they resonated a little too close to home. Eventually landing right where she belongs, and lighting the path for those behind her.
Maybe, just maybe, this book will inspire you. I feel like I was inspired by Fat Girl Walking as a byproduct. If someone tells me a book is inspirational, I immediately reject it as drivel or something conjured by a distant PhD or B-list celeb that wants a summer home. Brittany set out to tell a story, in her inimitable voice, and entertain the hell out of anyone lucky enough to pick up a copy. This book is inspirational, but I don’t think it meant to be.
Sometimes the fat girl gets cast as the funny friend, and ends up being the star.