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Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body
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Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body

4.23  ·  Rating details ·  6,670 ratings  ·  827 reviews
From the New York Times bestselling author of Bad Feminist: a searingly honest memoir of food, weight, self-image, and learning how to feed your hunger while taking care of yourself.

“I ate and ate and ate in the hopes that if I made myself big, my body would be safe. I buried the girl I was because she ran into all kinds of trouble. I tried to erase every memory of her, bu
Audible Audio, 6 pages
Published June 13th 2017 by Harper Audio
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Jun 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the memoir I will compare all other memoirs against. Roxane Gay has written one hell of a perfect book. If I hadn't been a fan before, I would for sure be one now. Not only is this an honest, unflinching look at herself and her life and her choices, it is also stylistically beautiful in a way most books (fiction or non-fiction) never achieve.

Roxane Gay tells, quite literally, the story of her body. She is completely and brutally honest in her approach and does not mince her words when de
"Something Terrible Happened"

Whew! Roxane Gay gives it up and lays it all out there baring body and soul to the world in HUNGER.

She writes about the unspeakable horror that broke her young body and mind at age 12 and reveals the struggles of a 400+ weight challenged woman in our society....the limitations....the stares....the shame....and the constant battle of trying to lose hundreds of pounds.

She also reveals facts about health issues, personal relationships and difficulty in purchasing clothe

Jul 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Part self loathing part empowering account of a woman dealing and living with her life long weight demons.

She recounts so many of the indignities that befall her as a larger person in today's society.

It's both incredibly uncomfortable and comforting to hear someone else describe trauma and pain so acutely. It makes your own pain and troubles feel not so isolating. I found some of the stories here so brutally honest and feel so ashamed at humanity. The cruelty, the indignity she suffered due to
Aya Hamza
“This is a memoir of (my) body because, more often than not, stories of bodies like mine are ignored or dismissed or derided. People see bodies like mine and make their assumptions. They think they know the why of my body. They do not.”

*Listened to the audiobook, read by Roxane Gay herself.

TRIGGER WARNING: Rape and eating disorders.

2.5 stars.
I was hesitant to write this review, because everyone loved this book, and I thought I would.. but I didn't like it as much! Parts of this book made me an
Lily ☁️
3 1/2 stars

“I often say that reading and writing saved my life. I mean that quite literally.”

Gosh, this was book was heartbreaking.

I’m usually not too fond of listening to audiobooks, but memoirs and biographies are the rare exception in which I actually prefer them, especially if the authors themselves are reading their work.

Roxane Gay speaks from her heart in Hunger. Her words are raw, unfiltered, and unflinching. You feel her deep-seated pain, and you feel her struggle to cope with the ab
May 09, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
(3.5) I’d never read anything by Roxane Gay before, but somehow already knew the basics of her story: the daughter of Haitian immigrants to the American Midwest, she was gang raped at age 12, and to some extent everything she’s done and become since then has been influenced by that one horrific experience. Not least her compulsive overeating: “I ate and ate and ate to build my body into a fortress,” she writes, as if the bigger she grew the safer she would remain. At her heaviest Gay was super m ...more
Barbara (The Bibliophage)
Roxane Gay’s memoir, Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body is exquisitely emotionally raw. If my closest friend poured her deepest, darkest secrets out to me, it couldn’t begin to be this vulnerable. It hurt my heart to read chapter after chapter of Gay’s lifetime of emotional and physical pain. And yet, I have conflicting feelings about this book.

After finishing the book, I searched out Gay’s recent interview on The Daily Show with Trevor Noah. I wanted to hear the tone in her voice as she told her sto
This book had me angry, sad, happy and embarrassingly self aware.
Her thoughts are intimate, engaging, intense and very raw.
I have/do struggle with my body image and self respect, I think everyone does. I think that's normal. The fact that I think that's normal is also frightening. We are all a bit screwed up.
Roxane Gay's emotional reveals are both completely endearing and a wee bit scary.
If you have ever struggled with life, adulting and all the emotions that go with that...
READ THIS. You are n
I only meant to read a sample of Hunger, but I found the first few chapters so compelling that I had to read on. The author opens with some clear statements: every body has a story, this is hers; it is not a weight-loss memoir; not a motivational book, nor a 'success story', but simply a true story. From the beginning, she is disarmingly honest and open. She talks about her struggle to accept her size and her experiences as a fat woman, but this is much more than just a book about food, weight a ...more
Jul 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, tbr-2017
Trigger warning: rape

I really don't have much to say besides go and grab this book to read. This is a painfully honest memoir by Gay. At times I felt like she had mailed me a copy of her diary and said enjoy the read. I wanted to look away at times because it was too much. She tap into the voice that lives in all women to a certain extent telling us we are not good enough time and time again.

If you have read Gay's other works, you may know she was a victim of group rape when she was 12. She goes
Nicole (Read Eat Sleep Repeat)
Brutally raw, honest, and powerful, I found this to be utterly relatable.
Sep 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Brutally honest and filled with so much pain, this memoir is raw, open, and beautifully written.
Aug 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
“I was broken and then I broke some more, and I am not yet healed but I have started believing I will be.”
-Roxane Gay

Roxanne Gay opened up her soul and bared it for all of us to see.

Her Memoir tells the story of her emotional, physical and psychological struggles which stemmed from her being gang raped at the age of 12. She explores how this violent attack affected how she felt about herself, her body and her worth as a human being. She ate to fill a void that could never be filled. She shared
Mar 18, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“Ecco il mio cuore, quello che ne resta. Ecco la ferocia della mia fame, ve la mostro. Eccomi qua, mentre finalmente mi concedo la libertà di essere vulnerabile e umanissima.“
È un frammento delle pagine conclusive di questo memoir, nel quale Roxane Gay, haitiana statunitense, oggi scrittrice, docente e saggista, ripercorre l’origine della sua obesità, quando un atto di agghiacciante violenza del branco portò una ragazzina appena dodicenne a costruirsi una solida prigione di carne, per proteggers
Jun 20, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The biggest downside of audiobooks, for me, is the difficulty in transcribing those passages you want to save forever into text. Also, I pretty exclusively borrow audio so when the library pulled my copy back, my bookmarks were irretrievably gone. Damn.
So I don't have quotes to support this review which is a shame because Gay writes beautifully, honestly and powerfully and her takeaways are both startling and deeply recognizable.
The quote I miss the most went something along the lines of a scen
Aug 05, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I like Roxane Gay. I like her voice, her bookish heart, her sense of humor, the critical eye she turns on herself and the world. I like her writing. And this written work, to me, does not read like a book. It's a smart collection of well-written blog entries -- many of them vulnerable, most of them insightful, a number of them nakedly emotional in a brutally candid way.

I deeply admire the courage and hard work it must have taken to produce this work, which glimmers with love and suffering and pa
Laura Gotti
Apr 06, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: wishing-list
Ero curiosissima di leggere questo libro. Mi aveva incuriosito molto la recensione della Murgia su Robinson, mi pare. E l'avevo già messo in wl da tempo, avendo letto altre recensioni dell'edizione in lingua. Ma quest'anno non deve essere il mio anno fortunato con i libri (solo?).

Premesso. E' un libro coraggioso ed è terribile il racconto e su questo non ci piove e c'è poco da aggiungere. Però. Sono pagine e pagine di ripetizione di un concetto chiarito ed esposto, anche bene, per carità, nelle
Julia Sapphire
I am speechless.
This was a quick read. The writing in this book is clear and straightforward. The first, approximately, half of the book does sometimes feels repetitive. I found myself thinking, “yes, yes, you’ve said this several times already” at various points. I think the second half of the book was stronger as it covered more topics related to Ms. Gay’s struggle with her weight.

I have such mixed feelings about the content, though. What happened to Ms. Gay as a child is horrible, and it’s completely underst
Nov 18, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
(the rating is just a formality)

How can you possibly rate & review a book about someone's body? You can't. And because I love Roxane Gay so much & I'm constantly fascinated by her writing, I found myself in an hard place while reading it. This was the raw, unembellished memoir of a body. Roxane's body.
I knew her story before going into this because I've read an essay featured in Bad Feminist but this book was obviously much more than that.

This wasn't something easy to read - or to even
Jill D Scherer
Jun 27, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition

I was expecting more for such a high rating. I read half and skimmed the rest. Repetitive . Not at all inspiring or interesting.
Apr 26, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A história da Roxane conta como a literatura a salvou. Mas não só. Como ela magoou o seu corpo para se refugiar. Como ficou obesa ao encontrar na comida algum conforto. Como é viver num corpo gordo e todos os preconceitos com os quais convive regularmente.

Ela foi violada por um grupo de rapazes numa cabana de uma floresta onde era impossível ser ouvida por mais alguém. Tinha apenas doze anos. Carregou o peso dessa experiência em silêncio, sem contar nada aos pais ou amigos.

Passou a maltratar o
She bared her heart to us in this book. Very raw and honest and I really appreciate her choice to open up and be vulnerable with us. There's so much to learn from her story.
Genia Lukin
May 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I am an overweight person.

I didn't start out that way; I used to be a stick until I married. Then, in typically Russian style, I ballooned out, and never really managed to stop. As an overweight person, my life is diets, food, nagging from my nearest and dearest, frustration when shopping for clothes, frustration with myself, and guilt, so much guilt.

Maybe the worst part about it is that I still feel like a thin person in a thick person's body; I keep being a bit surprised at things being too sm
Sabrina Grafenberger
“You may learn how to be the life of the party so that people are too busy laughing at or with you to focus on the elephant in the room.”

Not an easy book to read but an important one.

It hurts how accurate it is, especially when Roxane is talking about going to the fitness center, shopping for new clothes or going to the doctor (it doesn't matter what symptoms you have the doctors always somehow manage to end up talking about your weight even if you're there for a simple headache or a cold).

Jun 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Two books in one year from Roxane Gay, and both make it to my best of the year list. This one hit hard and was equal parts heartbreaking and healing. Highly, highly recommend.
Sep 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
“In writing this memoir of my body, in telling you these truths about my body, I am sharing my truth and mine alone. I understand if that truth is not something you want to hear. The truth makes me uncomfortable too. But I am also saying, here is my heart, what’s left of it. Here I am showing you the ferocity of my hunger. Here I am, finally freeing myself to be vulnerable and terribly human. Here I am, revealing in that freedom. Here. See what I hunger for and what my truth has allowed me to cr ...more
Yen Lyn
Jul 26, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Had I not used Audible 30-day trial, I wouldn't have known audiobook experience can be so heart/soul-touching when listening to the author's real voice in narrating her own story with emotions. While most part of the book focuses on the author's own body, it also includes several facets in life that made her view her body in many ways, and ultimately shaped who she is as a brave and strong individual now. She started using writing as a weapon to strive through her painful, nightmarish childhood ...more
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Roxane Gay’s writing has appeared in Best American Short Stories 2012, Best Sex Writing 2012, Oxford American, American Short Fiction, West Branch, Virginia Quarterly Review, NOON, The New York Times Book Review, Bookforum, The Los Angeles Times, The Nation, The Rumpus, Salon, The Wall Street Journal’s Speakeasy culture blog, and many others. She is the co-editor of PANK and essays editor for The ...more
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“In yet another commercial, Oprah somberly says, “Inside every overweight woman is a woman she knows she can be.” This is a popular notion, the idea that the fat among us are carrying a thin woman inside. Each time I see this particular commercial, I think, I ate that thin woman and she was delicious but unsatisfying. And then I think about how fucked up it is to promote this idea that our truest selves are thin women hiding in our fat bodies like imposters, usurpers, illegitimates.” 45 likes
“When I am walking down the street, men lean out of their car windows and shout vulgar things at me about my body, how they see it, and how it upsets them that I am not catering to their gaze and their preferences and desires. I try not to take these men seriously because what they are really saying is, “I am not attracted to you. I do not want to fuck you, and this confuses my understanding of my masculinity, entitlement, and place in this world.” It is not my job to please them with my body.” 36 likes
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