Wednesday, April 23, 2014
How I Got Skinny, Famous, and Fell Madly In Love Review & Playlist
“Thick. Heavy. Big boned. Plump. Full figured. Chunky. Womanly. Large. Curvy. Plus-size. Hefty.” To sixteen-year-old Emery Jackson, these are all just euphemisms for the big “F” word—”fat.” Living on a Southern California beach with her workout fiend dad, underwear model sister, and former model mother, it is impossible for Emery not to be aware of her weight.
Emery is okay with how things are. That is, until her “momager” signs her up for Fifty Pounds to Freedom, a reality show in which Emery will have to lose fifty pounds in fifty days in order to win the million dollars that will solve her family’s financial woes. Emery is skeptical of the process, but when the pounds start to come off and the ratings skyrocket, she finds it hard to resist the adoration of her new figure and the world of fame. Emery knows that things have changed. But is it for the better?
As I started reading How I Got Skinny, Famous and Fell Madly In Love I had mixed feelings. At first reading about Emery made me feel bad about myself.
I try to be very open and honest about the fact that I have, and probably always will, struggle with eating issues. I was the opposite of Emery, starving myself instead of overeating.
Even though my struggles with eating weren't the same as Emery's I definitely felt a kinship.
Like Emery I hid food in secret places in my room. My secret shame, eating empty diary calories. Ken Baker hit it right on the head as he speaks through Emery. The comfort and shame that such an action brings.
Emery's video blogs go straight to the heart expressing everything I grew up thinking as a teenager living near Los Angeles in an image obsessed world.
Emery's journey of self discovery is, in its own way, beautiful in its heart wrenching honesty. Ken Baker writes so well I found myself forgetting that this is nit a true diary and Emery is not real. Ken Baker fills a void in young adult literature giving us an amazingly strong girl with a voice and a message for all of us with body image issues.
"The difference between being ugly and beautiful has zero to do with your appearance." (Baker 262)
Music Playlist for How I Got Skinny
Who Says (Selena Gomez)
Counting Stars (One Republic)
We Can’t Stop (Miley Cyrus)
Oh Very Young (Cat Stevens)
Celebrity (Brad Paisley)
She’s So Mean (Matchbox 20)
Chocolate (The 1975)
The Great Escape (Gwen Stefani)
God Don’t Make Lonely Girls (The Wallflowers)
Price Tag (Jessie J)
California Gurls (Katy Perry)
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Ken Baker is the E! News/E! Online Senior Correspondent and Breaking News Editor, an acclaimed author, producer, public speaker and former pro hockey player.
Ken reports breaking news, conducts celebrity interviews, delivers investigative reports and hosts a range of news segments for E! News, E! Online, E! International, E! News specials and the network’s live events.
Baker has published six books. His newest work is a novel due out in April 2014 titled “How I Got Skinny, Famous and Fell Madly in Love,” a story about an obese teen who is pressured by her family to go on a reality show to lose weight and, in so doing, learns the real meaning of freedom.
His debut novel, “Fangirl” (Running Press, 2012), told the story of a pop star who falls in love with a fan amid a sensational tabloid drama. Ken is adapting “Fangirl” into a movie in collaboration with Converge Media.
Ken is currently at work on a series of Hollywood-themed thrillers set for release in 2015.
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