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My Fat, Mad Teenage Diary (Rae Earl #1)

3.73  ·  Rating Details  ·  2,422 Ratings  ·  321 Reviews
An alternate cover edition can be found here.

It's 1989 and Rae is a fat, boy-mad 17-year-old girl, living in Stamford, Lincolnshire with her mum and their deaf white cat in a council house with a mint off-green bath suite and a larder Rae can't keep away from. This is the hilarious and touching real-life diary she kept during that fateful year - with characters like her ev
Paperback, 342 pages
Published 2007 by Hodder
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To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper LeeThe Outsiders by S.E. HintonThe Catcher in the Rye by J.D. SalingerLittle Women by Louisa May AlcottPride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Best Coming of Age Stories
201st out of 900 books — 1,085 voters
The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne FrankSCHOOL SPIRIT 1989 by XMy Fat, Mad Teenage Diary by Rae EarlDon't Peek by Marita A. HansenAnne Frank by Sid Jacobson
Best teenage diaries & journals
3rd out of 17 books — 8 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Apr 20, 2016 Esil rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
3 stars. When I first started reading My Mad Fat Diary I thought I should stop. This is not a book for me. I’m not the intended audience. I really should just pass this on to my 14 year old daughter. But for some reason I just kept reading it to the end – laughing a bit, cringing a lot, and feeling somewhat sad and frustrated. My Mad Fat Diary is the obviously quite edited 1989 diary of Rae Earl. Earl was 17 years old in 1989. She was overweight, had just spent some time in a psychiatric hospit ...more
Inés Izal
Jul 28, 2014 Inés Izal rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014, favoritos
Siempre dicen que los libros son mejores que las películas (en este caso la serie TV). Pero aquí no es el caso, el libro se torna aburrido y repetitivo en muchos momentos.
Rae está loca, lo sabemos, pero aquí tiene una especie de obsesión extrema con buscar un novio.
Sea como sea, siempre me quedará ver la serie y alegrarme las vistas:



Feb 20, 2013 Eszter rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya
This book was bit of a let down, really. I just finished the BBC series based on this book and it is brilliant and makes me cry and makes me laugh and I'm in love with all the characters and their realtionships, but the book was just...not enough. I am aware that these are Rae Earl's original diary entries only edited a bit, so I didn't a expect a story with an exceptional plot and no loose ends, but still, the abrupt ending was I bit weird.

Earl's style is enjoyable and I found myself amused oft
Rae Earl’s diary shows how universal teenage issues (and beyond) really are. You don’t need to grow up overweight to relate to her struggles. Everyone experiences self esteem issues, family problems, and the desire to be accepted. As it is with most personal diaries, Rae never holds back and pours out pure raw emotion and truth in every entry. This could easily be a very depressing book but it isn’t. Earl manages even in the darkest moments to maintain her hope and humour, allowing you to share ...more
Reijilie Wynne
Feb 23, 2013 Reijilie Wynne rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites
You need to go into this book separating it from the TV show. The show is sheer brilliance and the people reading this book because of it clearly agree or you wouldn't be making the effort. The book is the diary of a teenage girl - a 17 yo girl at that. We're all the centres of our own universe at that age.

In saying that, it was a particularly interesting read. Especially from the POV of someone so constantly bullied & harassed that she expected it, and made comments like "only one person ha
Jun 21, 2016 Mel rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 3-stars, read-in-2016
Quick review as this book took so much energy from me.

To start: I'm a fat girl. So is the girl writing this diary. I related so well to everything she is going through. Like her problems are ALREADY relatable but being the same size as her makes it so I relate extremely well. Almost too well. Which brings me to my first problem.
She spends the ENTIRE 346 pages hating everything about herself and all I felt the entire time reading it is that I should also hate myself. I should hate the way I look
I'm not a huge fan of the diary format, but I've had good luck with British diaries-as-books. Remember The Adrian Mole Diaries? I read those years ago. And of course, there's always Bridget Jones's Diary.

My Mad Fat Diary was entertaining and touching. It's the story of Rae Earl, a teenage girl who's just been released from a stint in a psychiatric hospital and is trying to sort out her life. She's desperate to lose weight, and desperate to have a boyfriend, and isn't having a ton of luck with ei
May 02, 2013 Anna rated it really liked it
From my blog, The Writer Diaries.

Channel 4 has recently made a series based on this book – or shall I say, diary. It’s funny and brilliant and while the acting is not the best as Sherlock or Doctor Who, it’s real and raw. I watched the show and fell in love with it, and knew I had to read the diary it’s based off of.

First, I just have to say – take this at face value. There’s no huge plot line, and it’s not written as a story like Perks of being a Wallflower. It’s real. It’s an actual diary, so
Jamie (Books and Ladders)
Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review

I really enjoyed this one. I thought it was honest and raw -- which, obviously, because it is edited versions of Rae Earl's actual teenage diaries. Kudos to Rae Earl for publishing those because my teenage diaries are never going to see the light of day ever again.

I have lots of good things to say about this one. It was so truthful and it transported me back to when I was a teenager. I liked that no punches were pull
Mar 13, 2013 Nicola rated it really liked it
I decided to read this book because I had watched and enjoyed the recent Channel 4 series. I quickly realised though that the book is quite different from the series and initially felt a little bit disappointed. The appeal of the series for me was mainly that it was set in the late 90's when I too was a teenager. It brought back so many memories. The book however is set in 1989, when I was only 4. As I read on though and dropped my expectations I started to really enjoy it. It's completely 100% ...more
Apr 19, 2013 Beckyleigh rated it it was ok
I started reading this with high expectations. I haven't watched the tv series, but I normally love diary style books because they're usually full of humour and they're light reads for me. There will be spoilers in this review.

A light read it certainly was, but I felt that the book was plotless and repetitive. I do realise that it's Rae's actual diary, and I admire her for having the courage to put it out there!

It started off well, but then it just went slowly downhill. The same things seemed t
"(...) His girlfriend is lovely.

Yes, Teen Rae. Why are you fat? But you know, that question is irrelevant. That's like asking someone why the sky is blue. Answerless.

The year is 1989. Rachel "Rae" Earl has recently gotten out of the psychiatric ward. She was there, due to an undisclosed nervous breakdown and was forced to lie to get herself out. Rae overeats to find solace, goes to the pub with her best friend, Bethany, and is relatively boy-crazy.

Fans of Scarlett Epstein
Nov 10, 2014 Dalimar rated it it was ok
Shelves: biography, drama
Ya me habían dicho que el libro no era muy bueno y en este caso la serie de tv era mucho mejor,aún así decidí leerlo antes de verla serie,porque me gusta leer el libro primero antes de cualquier adaptación y también me gusta formar mi propia opinión,pero tenía total razón. He leído libros en forma de diarios,pero este fue aburrido,repetitivo y fastidioso. La protagonista me cayó bien y nunca pude ponerme en su lugar. No pude entenderla y aunque desde el comienzo sabemos que está loca,no es fácil ...more
Apr 20, 2016 Christine rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley, 2016-reads
Most people would be mortified if someone read their diary – especially their teenage years diary.

Rae Earl has published hers.

Granted, at one point in her life she wanted to burn it on the barbecue and they are now 25+ years old, but some of the issues are still relevant today. Give this book to teenagers and hope it becomes a jumping point for some important conversation.

When Ms. Earl began writing in her diary she was 17 years old, attending a private secondary school on a “scholarship scheme”
Mar 13, 2013 Vicky rated it it was ok
Unlike many others, I haven't actually watched My Mad Fat Diary. It was something that I was really interested in watching as it has themes of Mental Illness which I'm interested in and is very stigmatised in society. So I thought I'd give the book a go before I catch up on the series.

First of all, I would say that I enjoyed the writing of the book (composed in journal entries). It was a very relevant and realistic teenage voice, that was relate able and sometimes hilarious. Unfortunately, this
Dec 13, 2013 Pook rated it it was amazing
อานแลวหลงรักนางเอกเร ทังตลกทังเศรา ถึงนางอวนแตกมีอารมณขันนะ นิสัยนารัก แครคนอืน บางชวงทีนางจิตตกกเศราเศรา หดหูกวาในซีรียอีก เขาใจอารมณเหงาๆของนาง ถูกลออะไรกหัวเราะกลบเกลือน ทำใหเปนเรืองตลกไปเหมือนไมคิดอะไร แตพออยูคนเดียวจริงๆแลวเกบไปคิดหมดแหละ เศรามากๆ แอบรักชอบใครเคากไมมองหรอก ผิดหวังตลอดไดแตเพอฝันไปเรือย คิดมากกับรูสึกเหงาๆเหมือนวัยรุนทัวไปแหละ อานแลวคิดถึงตอนเปนวัยรุนนะ เชือมโยงกับสิงทีเรเจอไดหมดเลย อินมากๆอานไปรองไหไปกับนางหลายรอบอยู
ซีรียไมเหมือนในหนังสือซะทีเดียว ในซีรียเปนยุค90 แตในหนังสื
Sep 28, 2015 GG rated it it was ok
Shelves: swoon, teen
Um dos raros casos em que a adaptação para TV saiu melhor que o livro.

Comecei a ler por causa do seriado, que é genial, na minha opinião (~le sigh~ Finn). Apesar de haver diálogos e situações similares, o livro não conseguiu -nem de longe- me trazer os mesmos sentimentos, são bem diferentes, na verdade, admitindo aqui que só o li pra ter uma melhor noção do MEU Finn. E mais uma vez sinto a necessidade de reiterar que o do seriado é MUITO melhor.

As mensagens trazidas pelo livro são bem pontuais,
Jan 31, 2015 Aitziber rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: fans of the TV show, misfits, parents
I read Orange Is the New Black in 2013, and because of that book, I figured that My Fat, Mad Teenage Diary would bear only a vague resemblance to the TV show. After all, the diary is based on the experiences of Rae Earl, who has at least one brother, in the late 80s. The TV show, on the other hand, is about single child Rae Earl in 1996.

To my surprise, a lot of situations, anecdotes, characters and even dialogue were, if not exactly the same, then obviously based on Earl's real experiences.

Literally just a year in a life if a girl. It doesn't have a traditional story arc, but is funny, entertaining and at times heart-wrenching.

Really glad I decided to read it.

Review to come!
Apr 20, 2014 Katherine rated it really liked it
I read this book quickly and really enjoyed it. Usually I do not get on with the format of a diary in a book but in this book it really worked, most likely because it is Rae's diary bar a bit of tweaking. It makes it real, because you can picture it all happening and feel her emotions, because it's been written as it happened, because it's fairly authentic I don't think it should be criticised for the lack of plot or character development because for the most part this hasn't been 'created' it i ...more
May 27, 2015 Cami rated it it was ok
La verdad me fue muy extraño leer el diario de alguien, sinceramente me aburría y además como es un diario no teníamos tanta información más que el punto de vista de la protagonista, horas o quizás días después de que hubieran pasado en realidad los hechos.
No es un mal libro pero no fue mi estilo.
Pude reconocer algunos personajes en el show de TV pero otros creo que fueron inventados para la línea de la historia.
Feb 03, 2016 Reddish rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sabes ese momento en el cual lees no un libro cualquiera, sino EL libro. TU libro. Así me he sentido leyendo My Mad, Fat Diary. Simplemente no tengo palabras para describir todo lo identificada que me he sentido.

“No one is what you expect behind closed doors. And some brilliant people are eaten up by some terrible things.”
Sarah Anderson
Thank you netgalley and St Martin's press for letting me read the epub.

I'm a little torn about this born: on the one hand, the author's voice is brilliant, funny, and incredibly relatable. On the other... nothing really happens.

I guess that's just life, seeing as how this is a real diary. Love doesn't just happen because we want it to or because it makes a good story. The girl doesn't always manage to get her weight under control because it's going to be written down for all to see.

But that's w
This diary will definitely resonate with teens who are always very critical and unsure of themselves. Rae has different struggles than those at her age and time period; she secretly deals with OCD while very publicly having to wade through the world as a bigger girl whose appearance every seems to feel free to comment on. Since this is Rae's real diary, we come to have a sort of intimacy with her that we may not have with a fictionalized account.

It seems as though every time something seems to b
When St Martin’s pitched me MY MAD FAT DIARY I was sort of on the line about it. It’s not something that’s in my normal wheelhouse but if it’s pithy and funny and quirky, I can usually appreciate it. So I accepted and now . . . I’m not too sure how to review it. I definitely didn’t like it like I thought I would and now I’m kind of stuck. It’s a real diary written by a seventeen-year-old. What am I going to comment on? The writing? The realism? The authenticity? I don’t even know.

It reads like a
May 04, 2016 Natasha rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016, 2016-releases
I admire Rae Earl, but her story is one that is better dramatized. I'm a big fan of the MMFD TV series; it is a powerful voice for overweight youths who are struggling to accept themselves. This original memoir is good, but it lacks punch.

I kept thinking that MMFD was a YA novel, not a memoir. It certainly reads like a YA novel, yet with considerably less plot and detail. It is composed of a year of Rae's journal entries--which are simultaneously hilarious and full of self loathing--and as much
May 01, 2015 Aneirys rated it really liked it
I'm surprise I likde this book. Maybe it was because I understood her so much.I know what is like to have difficult friends and to be the only one without a boyfriend. Unfortunately or Fortunately (don't know which oneis more appropiate) if I had a diary on my teenage years it would be something like this.


I like it shows the sincerity of a girl whith depression in the rawest form, without caramelizing any details. And it also shows how a book can end without love but with really sincere, cool fr
I have read this book twice over, and still, I can't bring myself to nudge the star rating up one. The whole book just gave off the air of hit and miss, don't get me wrong I loved the book, but there was just something that wasn't quite... well, let me put it this way: it was like watching a 'hefty' ballerina giving it her all dancing around an empty stage, it was cringey to watch.

But despite this, I fell in love with this teenage Rea Earl and honestly felt like when read through the various ent
Natasha (Diarist) Holme
May 18, 2013 Natasha (Diarist) Holme rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Diary lovers, those who love the 80s and a good laugh
Recommended to Natasha (Diarist) by: Realised it had similarities to my own book
I was excited about reading this 1989 diary by a teenager experiencing an eating disorder (compulsive eating) as it is so close to my own book (1989 diary by an unstable teenager experiencing bulimia).

Rae Earl is hilarious. I laughed out loud so many times (just follow her on Twitter too: @RaeEarl. She is stellar). Rae is seventeen, fat, recovering from a nervous breakdown, and aching to get laid. The lads can't see past the fat ... so she keeps eating.

That's it, in a nutshell. And it's wonderf
Jul 25, 2016 Robbie rated it liked it
Shelves: ya, non-fiction
I liked it a lot, though it really is just a teenager's real diary from the '80s, so the storyline depended on a storyline happening in her life, and it didn't, so much. However, having said that, the TV series it spawned is EPIC, and it was a quick and fun read and I wanted to see what would happen to Rae, so it was compelling enough that I raced through it. Brutal honestly is usually a good thing for me, and it was definitely the case reading this book. So many teens deal with depression and O ...more
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“I wish I was Rapunzel
Letting down her hair
But at the bottom of my tower
There's nobody stood there.

No prince to carry me off to the sunset...
The reason why of course,
I don't look like his princess,
I look like his horse.”
“I just don't get men. Mind you, I don't get me either.” 27 likes
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