Not His Type
By Chamein Canton
Genesis Press, Indigo Imprint 2007 pp 456
I stopped in at the local library yesterday and found a shelf full of new paperback romances by African American authors and featuring African American characters. Now I have not read a romance novel in a long time. So I picked up one about a literary agent who happens to also be a baseball fan, a single mother, and a larger size woman and started reading it. Two hours later, I was half way through the book, and could not put it down, so I took it home.
For New York literary agent and author Cathy Chambers, life is pretty good. She has a job she loves in a city she loves; things are even sweeter because New York is home to her favorite baseball team, the Yankees. For years, Cathy has had a crush on Yankees superstar Marcus Fox. He's handsome, he plays for her favorite team, and, best of all for Cathy, he's completely unattainable. That is, until chance leads her to meet him in a trendy restaurant.
Now, Cathy's dream is suddenly attainable ... if she can overcome her self-consciousness long enough to believe that Marcus, who is well-known for being surrounded by skinny models, could really be interested in a full-figured woman.
I too am a full-figured woman - ok so I am considerably overweight - but this is the first time I have ever seen any books about the plus-sized women, and a romance as well. And I like watching baseball too.
There were some very interesting observations made.
It's because being fat is the last form of acceptable discrimination in this country. Heck, there's a whole multi-billion dollar weight loss industry based on the fact that noone wants to be called fat.
Do you agree with this statement?
If you act like you're fat and don't deserve anything good to happen to you, then that is exactly what will happen. It has nothing to do with the fates, other people or even God. You will have shot your own self in the foot.
The author Chimein Canton has put a lot of herself in this novel. Like Catherine, she too is a single mother with college age twin sons, a larger size women, and she is also a literary agent (specializing in African American women) based on Long Island.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Like I said, I couldn't put it down. I finished it in just 6 hours, which for me is slow, but I did have to do some shopping, run around after my son, and organize dinner. There were tons of detail about how a literary agency works, which I really enjoyed.
The topic of large women is very relevant to our society because Two-thirds of Americans (over 64%) are overweight. Almost one-third is obese. It is now the norm to be large, not the exception. However the media, the health industry and that billion dollar weight-loss industry do everything they can to make women feel guilty about being large. The medical industry thinks obesity is a disease.
I have actually seen several articles that mentioned how the food industry is deliberately putting chemicals in the food to make people eat more. That's part of what MSG does.
Remember the 1999 Emmy awards when Camryn Manheim from The Practice won an Emmy. She held it up in the air and said "This is for all the fat girls". She is my hero on TV. She is currently starring in The Ghost Whisperer.
So now if I hear anyone comment on my size, I take the power. Most of the time.
"Look at her. She's fat" (person sniggering or pointing a finger)
"Yes I am fat. Do you have a problem with that?" (me)
"Yes I do, I find it disgusting". (them)
" Well ma'am, that's your problem to deal with. I have no problem with being fat." (me) and I walk off. I dont bother to tell them that I have PCOS, and one of the symtoms of PCOS is Obesity or the inability to lose weight. Before I hit puberty, I used to be a rather skinny girl.
I am especially empowered to say this after my recent brain surgery. In all my pre-operative and pre-admission tests, NOT ONE single person told me that I was a bad risk because of my size. In fact the anathesiast really made my day, when he said to me "I dont think we will have any problem with your heart. If your heart can handle the body changes that occurr throughout a nine month pregnancy, then it can handle a 4 hour operation with no problems".