Picture yourself in a lounge chair wearing sunglasses, next to a glistening body of water, with a tall glass of sweet tea. Or a mint julep, if you prefer. This book is in your hands, and you will be unable to put it down. Diary of a Mad Fat Girl, a novel by Stephanie McAfee, is a book that you will give to a girlfriend to read, who will give it to another girlfriend, and so on, until it comes back to you with a broken spine, dog-eared and wavy from water damage.
Ace Jones does NOT lead a charmed life. Hence the word “mad” in the title. Not only does her best friend back out of a planned vacation to Panama City Beach at the last minute, but she risks losing her job because of her ill-tempered principal. Her other best friend is stuck in a love-less marriage, which has gone from verbally abusive to physically abusive. Throw in Ace’s tendency to devour pizza and guzzle beer when she’s upset, and you’ll know why she’s mad and fat.
Ace deals with all these problems and more in a hilarious way. Hilarious to the reader, that is. Ace’s love life is also full of twists and turns. Should she be with the coach she had an affair with, the surprisingly wealthy biker she met in the parking lot of a strip club, or her childhood sweetheart?? Warning to readers…this book does delve into explicit adult themes.
I had trouble with the descriptions of Ace as a teacher (no teacher can take a sick day on the spur of the moment without sub plans, and it seems as though Ace doesn’t teach in the entire book). I also felt like the book was about a hundred pages too long. I read the paperback edition, which had been expanded to 353 pages as opposed to the original 125 page ebook. While perhaps those extra pages improved the story, I felt the ending dragged on for too long.
Overall, though, Diary of a Mad Fat Girl was a quick, easy read, perfect for Spring Break.
Disclosure: I was compensated for this BlogHer Book Club review but all opinions expressed are my own.