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Fat Boy vs the Cheerleaders

3.64  ·  Rating details ·  1,016 Ratings  ·  269 Reviews
It's geeks versus jocks in an epic battle of the beverages!

From "one of the most real, honest, and still funny male voices to come around in a while" (YALSA) comes a brand-new cast of quirky characters, pitting fat boy Gabe against the high school cheerleading team in a battle over control of the school's soda machine.

The war is ON! Never have the stakes been so high. Neve
Hardcover, 311 pages
Published May 6th 2014 by Sourcebooks Fire (first published January 1st 2014)
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To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny HanIsla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie PerkinsWe Were Liars by E. LockhartSince You've Been Gone by Morgan MatsonWhat I Thought Was True by Huntley Fitzpatrick
2014 Contemporary YA
258 books — 1,959 voters
Fat Boy vs the Cheerleaders by Geoff HerbachPOP! by Aury WallingtonThe Fizzy Whiz Kid by Maiya WilliamsLiving With Fred by Brad WhittingtonCanned and Crushed by Bibi Belford
Soda Cans
6 books — 3 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Rebecca McNutt
I'm really not a fan of books like this, they use that Diary of A Wimpy Kid style humor that I just don't find funny. If I were younger, say, twelve years old, I might appreciate it more.
Dec 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing
May 6, 2014
Honestville, Minnesota

The following transcript is a verbatim interview with an educator when he was brought into the Truth Police Headquarters for questioning after sharing a review of Geoff Herbach’s Fat Boy vs the Cheerleaders with his students thought to be inconsistent with society’s view of young people. This transcript is respectfully submitted as further evidence that young people are complex, interesting, brave, and not easily defined.

Here’s the truth, Officer Honesty. I can’
Amy Rae
Mar 29, 2015 rated it it was ok
All right, I'll say this much up front: While I expected to hate this book through and through, I ended up respecting what Geoff Herbach was trying to do. But it didn't work for me.

He's taking the slobs-vs.-snobs genre of 80s teen movies and trying to up the nuance in a contemporary YA novel. And good for him. I can see where he's trying to go with the various reversals and let's-learn-things-from-this-experience, but there was so much ugly stuff for me to slog through first that it didn't feel
IsaacY 
Mar 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kevin Topolovec
Oct 19, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What is it with contemporary YA and high school student archetypes from the Breakfast Club? Everyone is always either a delinquent, jock, nerd, preppy cheerleader, or emo.
Katie Shaw
This book was silly but a quick read & I finished it in three days. Despite the cliche battle between the popular cheerleaders & jocks vs. the band geeks, it was rewarding to watch Gabe figure out his identity and choose to come to terms with himself and his weight. In the past, he had always used humor as a defense, but he makes new friends that accept & take him seriously. I really enjoyed his relationship with his grandpa and their workouts together; I would certainly recommend th ...more
Rachel Hopkins
Irritated to find out that this book was originally published under a different title and that I had already purchased it for the library. Light-weight YA.
Oscar A.
Mar 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
Fat boy vs the Cheerleaders is an awesome book and I would definitely recommend it to you if you have not read it.
One of the things that I like about it is that by the end of the book he learns that he and other people should not be judged for their appearance. because in the beginning of the book he was being bulled and he went alone with it and tried to laugh at himself but by the end he was standing up for himself and wasn't letting anybody bully him, this made him more of a leader and he wa
May 07, 2014 rated it really liked it
Although FAT BOY VS. THE CHEERLEADERS is Geoff Herbach's fourth novel, it is his first that isn't about Felton Reinstein. There are similarities: new narrator Gabe is also a teen boy from a single parent household who finds himself developing new relationships and a new devotion to his interests. There's a similar stream-of-consciousness style. But while FAT BOY VS. THE CHEERLEADERS doesn't find Herbach stepping completely outside of its wheelhouse, it isn't a retread of Herbach's debut trilogy. ...more
Nov 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Summary- Chunk/ Gabe/ Gabriel is a over weight high school young adult who has the craziest story ever with and happy ending. It all started from raising some money for his band group by collecting soda bottle cans. Then the prices were raised to help out the cheerleader's group which weren't nicest people to him. Gabe then felt as it was time to put his foot down even though they barely left the floor. Gabe got into it all very fast. The cheerleaders jock boyfriends wanting to kill him, falling ...more
Aug 22, 2014 rated it liked it
Fat Boy vs the Cheerleaders is one of those cases of me picking up a book based solely on its title. I defy you to pass that title in your local bookstore or library and not, at the very least, be curious.

When Gabe discovers that the proceeds from the school's vending machine have been redirected from the band program to a new cheerleader dance squad, he sees red. And not the Mountain Dew Code Red that he'd been purchasing from the machine with his hard earned, part-time job money at a local dou
Short review:

I received this book from Netgalley in exchange of an honest review.

From the blurb I expected something epic, something special, something awesome. Sadly, it was not meant to be.Sure there is a big part that is about the soda stuff, but I felt it was over the top at times. At other times I just got bored because nothing happened. They kept talking about doing something, but didn't do much at first. And later it all escalated into one big thing which included the police and all that.
Oct 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
Geoff Herbach’s Fat Boy vs the Cheerleaders is a really fun story that I enjoyed more than I had expected I would. It has the cliche "geeks vs the popular kids" plot, but it is a very humorous and light story. It allowed me to just shut my brain off for a bit and escape, and since I listened to the audio version, it made my commute to school and work much more enjoyable. The story focuses on Gabe, (aka Chunk), who is an overweight high school band geek, and follows him, his friends, fellow band ...more
Memorial & Senior High LMC
Mar 04, 2014 added it
Recommended to Memorial & Senior High LMC by:
"That's probably just what's happening to me right now. Everybody chattering about the fat boy breaking and entering. Glad I'm locked in here instead of there in the cruel world."

Meet Gabe Johnson: student, trombone player, donut salesman, activist... criminal. Gabe, or "Chunk," tells us his story from an interrogation room. And why? Because he broke into a school soda vending machine--but there's a really good story behind it! Well, a crazy story, including shady school board meetings, riversid
Dec 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing

This book so freakishly reminded me of Winger, it isn't even funny. Gabe (Chunk) has two best friends: Jason and Camille. When Jason starts dating a cheerleader, things get tenuous because apparently Camille thought he was dating her. Eventually, Jason's treachery becomes enough to start a war, because the band Camille and Chunk are in looses funding in order to support the cheer squad. Chunk decides to get some self R.E.S.P.E.C.T. and lose weight with the help of his grandfather, all while tryi
Jessa Franco
Jul 19, 2016 rated it liked it
I really enjoyed the humor and character development, but the writing could have used polishing. I will note that this is my favorite story about a plus size character's journey through weight loss and getting healthy. Most books focus solely on body image and dieting/exercise. The protagonists journey may occasionally have other life distractions, but typically they focus solely on their weight. This book had the character on a journey of self appreciation and getting healthy, as well as dealin ...more
Nov 30, 2016 rated it really liked it
Gabe Johnson is that kid: the band geek, the fat kid, the comedian; however, when the school takes away the one thing that matters to him (band camp), he gets mad. What I really liked about this book is that what starts as a single thing for Gabe to be upset about turns into a downhill snowball. And there are a lot of things for Gabe to be mad about, but most of all is himself for not being the person he used to be before his mother walked out on him and his father. Good book for boys in middle ...more
Apr 27, 2015 added it
This was an advance reader copy that John brought home from a conference. It was a fun, cheerful YA read - much, much, much needed after reading Dark Places. I needed a brain cleanse/reset button between books.
Dec 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
While lighter in tone that Herbach's previous works like Stupid Fast, the characters are relatable and honest. Herbach nails teen angst without making me roll my eyes--a tricky balance of snark, wallowing, and sparks of insight.

Gregory Taylor
Wow! What a smart, funny book, with a ton of heart. The vivid voice, sharp humor, and raw honesty of main character Gabe kept me turning pages; I just had to make sure everything worked out.
Jan 10, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: young-adult, ebook
This was slightly less bad than the title sounds.
Sierra Villarreal
Aug 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Hm. Okay, this book was enjoyable enough to give it a positive rating. I didn't hate it or have any ragey moments while reading. Gabe was a realistic character who showed growth. I loved how he realized he was just as guilty of being judgmental as the cheerleaders and the guys who bullied him. He's class clown and decides he's done being a joke. He doesn't sink into self-pity too many times, and though I didn't adore his character, he was relateable. The side characters, especially Gore and RC 3 ...more
May 08, 2018 rated it liked it
This book was fun, I will admit it. All hell can break loose when you take funding from the band, let me just say that!

This is a geeks, fight the power book and it was a fun way of looking at a real issue which is the loss of music in schools. When Gabe finds out that the money from the vending machine is being taken from the band, and there will be no band camp this summer due to lack of funding, he rebels. And when he finds out that the money is being shifted to add a cheer leading dance team
Compton Persaud
Feb 26, 2018 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 09, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
When the funds for band evaporate, Gabe Johnson, cruelly nicknamed Chunk due to his size, decides to figure out who's responsible and get justice. It turns out the a new dance team has been created with the funds normally dedicated to the band. Naturally, Gabe has a whole host of hurdles on his way to justice, not limited to the school board, the local newspaper, his own geeky social status, and the fact the band director earns himself a DUI in mourning the loss of funding.

This book is funny and
Jun 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: lincoln-2019, ya-lit
I wish I could get more teens to read this book! It's all about fighting the system and standing up for what's right and learning about yourself and your peers. It's about adults who get it and who don't get it. It's about family and friendship. It's funny-- written as the interview Gabe is having with the cops after he's been arrested. He starts by telling us it's because he's robbed a pop machine. The school pop machine that used to raise funds for band and now suddenly it's for the dance team ...more
Jan 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
The book "Fat Boy vs the Cheerleaders" is a good book about a overweight kid named Gabe or the other names they call him, example being Chunk. The story takes place in summer an the whole story revolves around a 2 week period. He goes threw many trials on his journey some being his mom leaving him and his dad, being teared poorly by fellow school mates, and a lot more things. All to get justice for his band, due to the fact that cheer leaders are taking the donation money from their band. Overal ...more
Sligo Farrell
Jun 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I thought this book is the epitome of when things get out of control. A band program getting trashed for cheer leading programs? Sure, it happens. But an enraged boy leading a war against all who support that decision? That's where you normally cross the line. However, in this book, the kid who is leading this war is right. The decisions of adults aren't always correct, and when they don't listen to you, you don't just stand there. You make them listen.
Jul 28, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2017
Although I didn't enjoy it for the first half, this book became really fun to read. I felt bad for Gabe and appreciated his determination and how willing he was to fight for what he cares about. The format was a bit irritating at first, but I didn't mind once I got used to it. Overall, the book is also pretty funny and a bit emotional at parts.
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2015 Hub Reading ...: Fat Boy vs. the Cheerleaders 2 20 May 18, 2015 03:59PM  
2015 Hub Reading ...: Fat Boy vs. The Cheerleaders 4 10 Apr 01, 2015 11:45AM  
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I am the author of the YA title, Stupid Fast (June 2011 from Sourcebooks Fire). I also wrote The Miracle Letters of T. Rimberg, a Novel from Three Rivers Press. When I'm not writing books, I'm writing for Radio Happy Hour or developing ridiculous musical bits.

When I'm not writing, I'm teaching writing at Minnesota State, Mankato, which means I write a lot of comments about writing on student writi

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