Title: Fat Angie: Rebel Girl Revolution
Author: E.E. Charlton-Trujillo
Release Date: March 5, 2019
Book Form: ARC
Page Count: 352
Genre: YA Contemporary, LGBT
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Disclaimer: I received this ARC for free in exchange for an honest review from the publisher.
“More trouble at school and at home — and the discovery of a missive from her late soldier sister — send Angie and a long-ago friend on an RV road trip across Ohio.
Sophomore year has just begun, and Angie is miserable. Her girlfriend, KC, has moved away; her good friend, Jake, is keeping his distance; and the resident bully has ramped up an increasingly vicious and targeted campaign to humiliate her. An over-the-top statue dedication planned for her sister, who died in Iraq, is almost too much to bear, and it doesn’t help that her mother has placed a symbolic empty urn on their mantel. At the ceremony, a soldier hands Angie a final letter from her sister, including a list of places she wanted the two of them to visit when she got home from the war. With her mother threatening to send Angie to a “treatment center” and the situation at school becoming violent, Angie enlists the help of her estranged childhood friend, Jamboree. Along with a few other outsiders, they pack into an RV and head across the state on the road trip Angie’s sister did not live to take. It might be just what Angie needs to find a way to let her sister go, and find herself in the process.” – Goodreads
Before I begin, I’d like to point out that there’s some content in this book that may be troubling to some readers. Trigger warnings for homophobia, hate speech, and suicide.
Fat Angie: Rebel Girl Revolution is the story of a teenage girl who is having a hard time with her ex girlfriend moving away, her friends being distant, her sister dying in service and becoming a hero, and old friends trying to become close again. When she gets a postcard her sister wrote before she died stating all the things she wanted them to do together, she enlists the help of her former friend Jamboree, Jamboree’s friend Zeke, and Zeke’s cousin, Angie’s bully’s best friend, Darius.
This story really broke my heart. Angie goes through the worst things – extreme bullying, what I would call abuse from her mother, and untreated mental illness. She has frequent panic attacks and is laughed at or treated as a nuisance rather than helped. That honestly made me so sad, it seems like such a common thing so many people go through. I can’t imagine what it’s like to be suffering from mental illness and have the whole world against you and no one to support you.
Her mother is absolutely awful. Like, she’s so evil she’s almost a caricature. Every scene she was in made me so angry I almost had to put the book down. It made me so upset to think of someone living with someone like that, having to be berated every day when what you need is help and love. It was kind of depressing.
Once Angie begins her road trip with Jamboree, Zeke, and Darius, the fun begins. Jamboree and Zeke are really great people. They truly want to help Angie with her sister’s list (Zeke documenting along the way) and help her to move on and get the acceptance she needs. Darius is a more morally grey character, as he’s her bully’s best friend but is starting to realize his best friend isn’t who he used to be. He struggles with the decision to keep his best friend, or stand up and tell the truth about what happened between them and Angie.
The road trip is a lot of fun. They do things like visit cheesy landmarks, do the things that scare them, and get out of their comfort zone. It’s a beautiful journey to watch, and I was cheering for them along the way. The journey Angie goes on is a beautiful one, and I really enjoyed the story.
The writing is kind of iffy for me. It’s not really my style. Despite the language, it reads a little young. I wasn’t a huge fan of all of it, although I did mostly enjoy the book overall. I would recommend this book to anyone who can handle the previously mentioned trigger warnings and wants to read a cute story about a teenage girl finding herself and finding acceptance.
My Rating: ★★★