Nicole M. Hewitt's Reviews > All of Me

All of Me by Chris Baron
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really liked it
bookshelves: own-kindle, fiction-addiction-read

This review and many more will be found on my blog on 1/15: Feed Your Fiction Addiction

This middle grade novel in verse chronicles a seventh grade boy’s struggle with his weight, but it also goes much deeper than that. While, on the surface, Ari’s issues stem from his weight and the bullying that comes with it, the underlying issues that have led to his unhealthy eating are at this story’s forefront. Ari sees his family breaking apart, he has trouble adjusting after a move and he feels like an outsider in almost every area of his life (even in his religion—he’s trying to prepare for his bar mitzvah, but he’s already a year late, and he has no real support from his family).

Baron’s verse is used beautifully to describe Ari’s uncomfortableness in his own skin: the way his clothes feel because they don’t fit him right, but also the way his self doesn’t seem to fit the image everyone has molded of him. After a particularly nasty bullying incident, Ari is put on a strict diet and he loses weight—but it’s not until he takes control of his own life and his own destiny that he starts to feel true change. I will say that part of Ari’s transformation is physical, so if you’re sensitive about the concept that weight loss is helpful and/or necessary, this book might not be for you. And I’ll confess that there were moments in the book where I worried that too much emphasis was being put on his strict diet. But Ari’s real growth comes from his realization that his outer self doesn’t define who he is as a person and the book shows his journey toward self-love, whatever the number on the scale might say.
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Reading Progress

July 14, 2019 – Shelved
July 14, 2019 – Shelved as: to-read
July 14, 2019 – Shelved as: own-kindle
December 6, 2019 – Started Reading
December 8, 2019 – Finished Reading
January 9, 2020 – Shelved as: fiction-addiction-read

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