The Next Big Thing
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The Next Big Thing

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3.64 of 5 stars 3.64  ·  rating details  ·  5,154 ratings  ·  180 reviews
In this funny, poignant debut, a plus-size heroine becomes a reality TV show contestant and discovers she's already beautiful enough to be the next big thing.

Kat Larson figured she had nothing to lose by becoming a contestant on the new reality show From Fat to Fabulous-except maybe a few dozen pounds. Then she'd finally be able to arrange a face-to-face meeting with Nick...more
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Published March 1st 2005 by Penguin Group (USA) (first published 2005)
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Kate
Kat is a big girl hiding a big secret: she's in love with an Englishman who thinks she's all of a size 4. She hears about a TV show called "From Fat to Fabulous" and decides to enter. She hopes to lose all the weight she needs to before the ravishing Nick (a London fashion designer) enters her life and finds out the truth about her.

Formulaic chick lit, but so not boring. I actually vascillated back and forth. I knew Nick was going to meet her and find out the truth, but I was thinking that perha...more
Kim
This was a fantastic book. It was a quick, entertaining read that made me laugh and made me tear up a couple times. I highly recommend this one.
Lindsay
Maybe it's because I'm a little (or a lot) overweight, but books where the main character is chubby and loses weight always interest me. While I know it's just a fictional character, I guess I feel like, if they can do it, so can I.
This book is about Kat who weighs over 200 pounds, and like most chubby girls, is unhappy about her weight. One day her friend Donna shows her a listing in the paper that there is going to be a reality show made to help fat girls get thin. It's a mix between Big Brot...more
Janel
I just loved this! I laughed through the whole thing. The story stars Kat, an average girl, living a safe life, working at a so-so job down in Memphis. She has an online relationship with a guy from England whom she's never met, and hasn't been entirely honest with him....she's overweight (a size 18) and he has no idea, and from what has been said in their conversations, it seems he would not be cool with it! Her best friend at work sees an ad in the paper looking to cast contestants for a new r...more
Megan
I really enjoyed this, more so than I thought I would. There were parts were I got a little irritated, but for the most part, this was a good book. I must have thought so, because I've now read two more by this author. :) Actually, I ended up finishing the last half in one night. Recommended.
Linda
Johanna Edwards was the first author to endorse my book Free Style. I wound up buying all of her books. This one is one of my favorites!
Julie
excellent book and so much fun to read. this got me hooked on johanna edwards. a must for anyone who loves chick lit.
Cassie
Kat Larson is 27 and overweight. She's struggled with her weight all her life and doesn't understand why she can't lose it. When Kat's bestie, Donna, shows her an ad in the paper for a new reality show, From Fat to Fabulous, she's not sure what to think. But then, her internet 'boyfriend', Nick, starts to talk about a face to face meeting - Nick thinks Kat is a size 4 not a size 18 - and Kat decides to take a chance and try out for the show, she's got nothing to lose but the fat. No one is more...more
L
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liz
So, guess who wants to be the next Jennifer Weiner? If you said Johanna Edwards, you are correct! I did really enjoy this book (I thought it was very cute), especially since my guilty pleasure when I'm tired of, like, thinking is watching reality TV. Our heroine Kat is a feckless PR rep who, at the urging of her loyal best friend, auditions for the reality show "From Fat to Fabulous." And gets picked. She winds up in a house with five other plus-size ladies competing to see who can lose the most...more
Lynn Hulsman
Having loved Jennifer Weiner's book Good in Bed, I had high hopes for this book, based on the premise. The idea of a reality-show background worked for me, and seemed ok if not exactly fresh. I like The Biggest Loser, so I expected to be taken on an emotional journey, with a learning process, and ultimately, redemption and self-acceptance by the main character.

I started reading the book and quickly found that I was not engaging with the heroine or the storyline. Kat (the main girl) is picked to...more
Lisa
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Jen
Fat girl chick lit, basically. We plus-sized ladies need a little love sometimes too :)

So the premise is that the heroine is a size 18 with an internet boyfriend in a different country - who thinks she's a size 4. She decides to try and get on a new reality show based around big ladies living together in a house, getting cash in their banks for losing weight and winning contests devised by the producers. She gets on the show, her internet boyfriend finds out and turns out to be a complete jerk,...more
Nancy S
Kat Larson is overweight and in an online relationship with an Englishman who believes her to be a size 4. So when she hears about a new reality show (From Fat to Fabulous)to lose weight she takes it as a sign that she will finally get the motivation to lose the excess weight so she can finally meet Nick in person and at the same time be a positive role model for overweight people.

The plot is written in a sweet manner and there are some funny parts, though none that make you laugh out loud. It i...more
Briana Alzola
I've struggled with my weight, too. I was a little surprised to see that the super fat character of this book didn't weigh too very much more than me, but I still liked her story. I didn't like her as much, I did think she was far too whiny. And I hated her love interest from the first second. If she had ended up with him, I would have rated the book much, much lower.
Katy
I wanted to like this book, but found it to be very boring.
Even though I hate to give up on books, I contemplated stopping when I was about 40% through, however after flipping through and reading the very last page, then I decided I had to keep with it to see what happened to get Kat to that point. So I finished it.
I felt like it skipped over a lot of things that would have been important to a weight-loss reality TV show such as the exercise regimens. The book did get more interesting towards...more
Amy
Fast easy read, it's funny when you read a book and you understand what they are talking about from personal experience. I loved the characters how each of them played a special role in the book. Some of the characters I could personally do without, never blame your weight problems on your children, that bothered me so much. Loved the book, can't wait to pass it on!
Jenn Flynn-Shon
When I started back on the journey of more aggressive reading I did a search at my library for Chick-Lit and this was one of the first books to pop up on screen. 'Okay,' I thought, 'There could be something here...' As a recovering reality TV junkie I was fascinated with the storylin. Right off the bat I knew Nick was no good for Kat but was curious to see how that would unfold. Ba-boom! The twist with the show had me dropping my jaw a little bit and laughing with just a hint of tragic irony. It...more
Caitlin Moyer
This book is a fictional story about reality TV. Overweight and out-of-shape Kat Larson finds her life flipped upside down when she is cast in the new weight loss reality show "From Fat to Fabulous" (Think: Biggest Loser) where she finds herself living in house full of women she is never met before. There, she must eat right and exercise in an effort to try to take home the prize-- a hefty paycheck.

On the show, Kat is forced to confront a lot of issues which have been holding her back in life,...more
Kathy
From a blog post I wrote in 005:

Another Chick Lit, this one by Johanna Edwards.

This was a pretty good book. The heroine, a size 18 woman, goes on a reality show called From Fat to Fabulous. In addition to the drama of being on the show, she has to deal with her internet/phone relationship with a guy in England who thinks she's a size 4.

The stuff from being on the show seems pretty accurate based on my brief forays into reality TV viewing and her description of life as a 'fat' girl is dead on. A...more
Carrie
Jennifer Weiner readalike about a plus size girl from Memphis who auditions for a reality show, "From Fat to Fabulous" in an effort to become the size four that her online boyfriend thinks she is. The usual stories-about-reality-shows hijinks follow, there's the requisite complaining about Lane Bryant, the discovery that the boyfriend is not who she thinks he is, so on and so forth. The main character is annoyingly whiny, but it turns out she's supposed to be, and as long as the book calls her o...more
Melinda Grooms
I liked this book. Kat is a overweight ends up applying for a weight loss tv show. Of course she gets selected and ends up flying out to be on From Fat to Fabulous. She hopes to lose enough weight so that she can finally meet the British hottie she met online - she had told him she was a size 4... Well the show speeded up that little bit and brought Nick on the show as a special guest - obviously he's an ass.
It was a hard book to put down. But Kat frequently annoyed me - she complained a lot. S...more
Cherie
This is okay. Not laugh out loud funny or thought provoking, but entertaining.
Susan Bazzett-griffith
If you combine a slightly less original/interesting version of Jennifer Weiner's Good in Bed with a very odd episode of The Biggest Loser and throw in a dash of Harlequin romance, you'll come up with a story that is approximate to The Next Big Thing. The story was an easy, fun read. Edwards makes her heroine Katrina easy enough to relate to and just likable enough to root for, but somehow she seems a bit underwhelming as a whole person. Overall, however, I did enjoy inhaling this bit of fluffy,...more
Ali
The protagonist was so whiny and irritating that I could barely root for her. I give this book 1.5 stars because I liked the last 30 pages.
Krista
I thought Edwards first novel was a fun read. The book was well written and I felt compelled to finish the story despite the clock ticking past 3am. There were a couple plot lines, chapters that I felt were unnecessary to the story (Kat wanting to write a novel), and I wish those would have made the cut during editing. However the storyline isn't completely predictable as in most chick lit, which I am very grateful for. Overall I enjoyed Edwards writing style and will probably be picking up her...more
Stephanie Corcoran
Why do I read these things? Why do I finish them? I plead insanity!
Meaghan
great behind the scenes on a reality tv show... the main character was funny and liked her and enjoyed watching her grow throughout the story
Stephany
THIS WAS A VERY GOOD BOOK. I WAS A LITTLE IFY ON IT AT FIRST. BUT IT'S ABOUT A GIRL WHO IS 'OVER WEIGHT' AND SHE CAN'T GET A 'REAL LIFE' BOYFRIEND SO SHE GOES ON THE INTERNET AND IS 'DATING' A GUY ON THERE. HER FRIEND/CO-WORKER TELLS HER ABOUT THIS REALITY TV SHOW WHERE SHE CAN LOSE WEIGHT (KIND OF LIKE BIGGEST LOSER, BUT IT'S PLAYED DIFFERENTLY!) SO SHE TRIES OUT FOR THE SHOW BECAUSE SHE WANTS TO MEET HER INTERNET BOYFRIEND AND HE THINKS SHE IS SKINNY!! IT'S DEFINITELY ANOTHER MUST READ!
Danielle Allen
An overweight girl goes on a game show to lose weight so that she can finally meet her online prince charming – who she’s been telling she wears a size four. Some good insights in some of the pain that overweight women go through due to prejudices. A fun “insiders look” at reality tv shows. Really entertaining if you love shows like the biggest loser. The end seemed unrealistic and little forced, but overall a good read. Definitely better than your average chick lit.
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Johanna also writes teen books under the name Jo Edwards.
More about Johanna Edwards...
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