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One Fat Summer

(Summer #1)

3.72  ·  Rating details ·  1,122 ratings  ·  121 reviews
No summer vacation could be less promising than Bobby Marks's.

Bobby Marks hates hot weather. It's the time when most people are happy to take off their heavy jackets and long pants. But for Bobby, who can't even button the waist of his jeans or reach over his belly to touch his toes, spending the summer at Rumson Lake is pure torture.

This particular summer promises to be w
Published (first published 1977)
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3.72  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,122 ratings  ·  121 reviews

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Oct 18, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well so it was it, since the book was written in 1976 few details are dated and the less talked about the homophobic language the better though it seems par for the time.

The story is about a 14 years old overweight teen named Bobby Marks who is in a lake town for the summers and to get out of going to the camp gets a job mowing the lawn of a strict Dr. Kahn and he is also hounded by the town bully who has taken a hatred for Bobby. However Bobby continues the work and soon due to the hard work q
mitchell k dwyer
Nov 21, 2007 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed
On the surface, One Fat Summer is the story of a pubescent boy learning to stand up for himself and, in the process, shedding the fat that has plagued him for most of his childhood. This is what young readers will see and admire.

If this were as far as the novel took its readers, it would be merely quite good. However, what Robert Lipsyte really gives us is an almost textbook example of the coming-of-age story. Bobby's learning to speak up, to do the jobs that need doing, and to say no to the ove
Haden Currie
Jan 30, 2015 rated it really liked it
I rate this Realistic Fiction story One Fat Summer by Robert Lipstye 4 out of 5 stars. This book took place at a fictional lake called Rumson Lake during the Civil Rights era. The main characters are Robert, Mom, Dad, Pete, Joanie, Willie, and Dr.Kahn. Robert goes to Dr.Kahn's house to mow the lawn and to get paid very little. Willie is a bully that always beats up Robert. Willie is drunk a lot. I really did like this book it was very exciting and sometimes funny. I can relate to the character R ...more
Jul 10, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: bullying, teen
I think about this book often, especially when summer rolls around, and came here to give it a well-deserved 5 star rating.

This is a wonderful teen book about how a teenager handles bullies, disappointed parents, a grumpy old man, and a perfect sister, all who give him grief about being overweight. They all try to break him or change him through humiliation, pestering, or shame, but it's not until he decides it's time to change his body and lot in life that he's able to overcome a weight proble
Joshua Bellis
Sep 05, 2017 rated it it was ok
It's boring.
Danica Stone
Jan 29, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This is one of a couple of books in a very odd genre that I read over and over as a child. The genre is something like "books that on the surface are teen wish-fulfillment fantasies about losing weight, but which are actually about them struggling with having one hypercritical and one totally codependent parent."

(Or really, two totally codependent parents, one of whom is on the hypercritical hypercontrolling end of the spectrum, and the other of whom is on the super-enabling, no-boundaries end.
Mick Schroder
Apr 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Bobby Marks hates summer. He loves to stay inside or were lots of close. He is always being made fun of. His best friend is alway there for him, her name is Joanie. Bob hated to go his house at the lake. He was alway being made fun of about his weight or how he is a summer camper. Joanie is alway there for him. That makes it a lot easier. His has a older sister. His sister and dad where so skinny and that was what set him and his sister apart. His dad was fusing about his weight or how he is laz ...more
Connor Bray
Jan 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing
In the realistic fiction novel known as One Fat Summer which was written by Robert Lipsyte, in this novel a boy named Robert is very unhappy with his body. Robert is always being harrassed or bullied about his apearrance in size. One day at a festival with his bestfriend Joanie, Joanie finds a flyer stappled to a board advertising a yard work job. As Joanie tries and persuades Robert to take the job he finally calls the owner of the flyer and sets up an interview. But Robert has a problem, he's ...more
Triston Martinez
Jan 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I rated this realistic fiction novel, One Fat Summer by Robert Lipsyte, 5 stars. This book took place on a fictional lake called Rumson Lake during the civil war era.This story is about a 200+ pound, 14 year old kid and his experiences over summer break.In this book there are plenty of characters such as his best friend Joanie who he's known since he was 3, his teen sister Michelle, a mean bully who bullies Robert everyday named Willie Rumson, and many more. Overall I thought this was a fantasti ...more
Jayde Madel
Jan 27, 2015 rated it liked it
The book, One Fat Summer by Robert Lipsyte is a realistic fiction. The novel is taken place at Rumson Lake. Rumson Lake is where 14 year old Robert lives. Robert is very overweight. He finds a lawn mowing job so he doesn't have to go to summer camp. The lawn is very big so the job is very hard. To add to that, Robert is competing against a big bully for the job. I thought the book was just okay. I thought it was just okay because it had some very interesting parts but then it had some very bor ...more
Apr 29, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015, young-adult, fiction
I read an excerpt of this book for some school assignment many, many years ago. The writing was so vivid and the plot so interesting that I've always wondered what happened in the rest of the book. I never knew the title or the author, but when I came across One Fat Summer on my library shelves, I knew instantly it was the book that excerpt came from. So of course I had to read it. It was almost as interesting and as vividly written as I remembered, although some of the details did feel a little ...more
May 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
One fat summer is such an amazing book I've read. Poor boy try's he's hardest to keep life going with being bullied. He suffers there so much by people always having something to say. .

I recommend this book to people who like to bully people and does who do get bully, it's such a good book.
Sep 12, 2011 rated it liked it
Set in the 1950's, it's the account of Robert Marks an overweight teen who is not comfortable in his own skin but spends his summer at his family's summer lake resort and gradually learns some things about himself, including that he's capable of a lot more than he thought.
Justin H
Dec 14, 2010 rated it it was amazing
great book, you should read this.
Jack Teitelbaum
Feb 27, 2014 rated it really liked it
Pretty good, it was a great plot.
Mark Miano
Oct 01, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
Bobby Marks weighs 200 pounds and it's summer time. While everyone is jumping in the lake with their shirts off and having a blast, Bobby can’t fully button up his pants. One Fat Summer by Robert Lipsyte is about Bobby and his hatred for summer. His parents want to send him for a camp but no one wants to go to camp and meet new people. He takes a job to mow Dr.Kahn’s massive lawn. He can’t even make it up the lawn and each time a rock goes in the blades of the lawn mower, the money for the blade ...more
Samantha Lyn
Dec 31, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reread
I read this book for the first time during 7th grade and I really enjoyed it. I recently purchased it and wanted to read it again to see how I felt about it now that I am older. I still really like it, however I think I enjoyed it more in middle school. I could really relate to the main character, I use to have a really hard time during hot months wearing summery clothes (shorts, tank tops, etc).
Overall, I liked the writing style, the characters and the plot. I would recommend it for younger re
Mary Havens
Jul 29, 2017 rated it liked it
Recommended to Mary by: ACC Elgin Bookshelf
Typical juvenile/YA (or at least what I think about and what I read when I was a kid). I liked the redemptive qualities of Robert as he grew into the person he was meant to be, not the person everyone assumed he was. Lots of bullying, some racial/ethnic/weight slurs but it was published in 1979 so that's something to consider when reading it. Also, his "humor" is a bit lacking. Lots of "don't have a cow" type phrases but whatever they said in the late 70s. Still, I like books about weight loss s ...more
Feb 04, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Young adult book about an overweight kid, Bobby Marks, who spends summers and vacations outside the NYC at Rumson Lake. When his dad pressures him into getting a job, Bobby secretly lies about his age to Dr. Kahn and becomes a lawn boy. Bobby is overweight; this is a fact that his family and society will not let him forget. Despite being put down and swindled by his boss and being bullied by the locals, Bobby works hard, he does his best, and he grows as a character.

*spoiler alert*
His best frien
Dec 22, 2017 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
I find that this book hit too close to home for comfort, both for the year, and subject. That of course makes me biased, in a good way, I liked this book, and the character Bobby Marks. This is a good read and I think even after all these years and maybe even more so now, peoples prejudices against Fat people still are alive and well in this, enlightened? , PC future. I was a big kid and this book I can really relate with.
Celine Annika
Feb 10, 2019 rated it did not like it
One Fat Summer is really one of the most mundane and boring books out there. It depicts the story of a young freshman in the summer who's trying to lose weight, which has potential to be a great story, but the way the story is written— all self-deprecating and self-pitying 200% of the time —creates a dullness in the book. However, the book does show the life-changing transformation a young Bobby Marks managed to undergo all in one summer.
Oct 18, 2018 rated it liked it
It was okay. It had a kind of interesting story line, it was kinda scattered.
Mar 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
it was pretty cool ig
May 06, 2017 rated it liked it
we are all a bit of Bobby Marks
Mar 13, 2019 rated it liked it
This was a good coming of age story and a really quick read. I’m looking forward to seeing the film adaptation called Measure of a Man.
Kara Laidig
Oct 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-s-lit
I randomly picked this book off the shelf at the library and I am so glad I did. This book is about a boy who doesn't have much courage. Throughout the book you get to see him transform into a young man. He faced a lot of challenges but he let them change him for the better. I definitely recommend this book.
Feb 17, 2017 rated it liked it
I was looking for a book on my classroom shelves that included the name of a season, for the PopSugar 2017 Reading Challenge, and this one jumped out at me. I remembered Robert Lipsyte as a frequent "favorite teen writer" when I was younger, but I never read anything from him, to my knowledge. So I gave it a try.

I liked Bobby Marks a great deal. As the narrator, he seems comfortable in his own mental skin, if not his physical skin. He notices his feelings and probes them for reasons. He makes m
May 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anyone with a heart and soul who loves to read
Recommended to Melissa by: My mom the English teacher in 1984
One of my favorite kid/young adult books from when I was a kid. Dug it up and reread it this year and it was just as good as I remembered. When I was a kid means it was probably written 30 years ago and it's set in 1952. Just like The Pigman by Paul Zindel (another one of my faves) this book seems dated in the lingo, atmosphere and dress, but the way the teenagers act, think, feel - that is timeless and Lipsyte gets it right.

I think this author must have coined the term "ice cream headache" and
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