Thursday, December 17, 2009

Fat Cat

Fat Cat by Robin Brande, Listening Library, 2009 // Knopf Books for Young Readers, 2009

Dear Fat Cat,
You are a delight from page one to the last punctuation mark on the last page!
There is so much to love in your story.

While listening to Kirsten Potter narrate your audiobook version, I had to curb the impulse to snap "Look, I can't talk right now," when I answered the phone.

I had to restrain myself from holding up my hand with an exasperated, "SHUSH!" when people spoke to me.

I was so enthralled in your storytelling that I practically lived with my earphones until the end.

I have now finished it.


Thank you so much.


Cat is an extremely bright, focused, hard working and academically gifted high schooler. She is also is overweight and candy bar dependent. She wants to win the science fair with every fiber of her being, in large part, so she can beat Matt McKinney, the guy that broke her heart in junior high school.

Her project, to live, as much as possible, like a hominid woman means Cat is walking everywhere instead of riding in a car. It means no computers, no telephone, and eating an approximation of a hominid diet. Before too much time passes, Cat is noting weight loss and improved fitness in her science journal. Her slim and toned figure begins to attract the kind attention from guys that she has never experienced before.

Author, Robin Brande does not stumble nor hit one false note in this story. I loved Cat's family who embraces her project. She has the kind of best friend that everyone yearns for and the project brings her closer to her younger brother. Brande does not quantify the amount of weight that Cat is losing. The focus is on the achievment NOT a specific number of pounds.

I was very intrigued and inspired by the vegetarian blueprint that is offered. Cat begins her new lifestyle under the supervision of a dietitian. She loves to cook and the healthy food she prepares is mouth-watering and savory and delicious. I could almost taste it. I did laugh as her supportive family gives a thumbs down to the tofu turkey at Thanksgiving.

Fat Cat is funny, honest and a sweet romance. This book celebrates families, healthy eating, exercise, friendship, hard work, home cooking, demanding teachers, teenage hormones and first love.

I am telling librarians, friends, relatives who are emailing me for suggestions for gift ideas, even strangers in doctor's waiting rooms about this book and I have it poised for homecoming college kids.

It is simply grand.

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