In 'My Ideal Boyfriend Is A Croissant', The Heroine Is No Flake
Added 07-21-19 10:06:01am EST - “Laura Dockrill's young adult novel stars a refreshingly direct, unapologetic ?" and occasionally crass ?" plus-sized girl who uses her doctor-imposed food diary to record her life and feelings.” - Npr.org
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I must say, I really am enjoying this trend of contemporary novels starring young women who are 100% body positive. Laura Dockrill's My Ideal Boyfriend is a Croissant fits squarely into that category, pulling no punches right from the jump.
In the opening scene, our snarky, self-confident plus-size main character Bluebelle (aka "BB") is visiting the doctor after experiencing her first asthma attack. She immediately runs up against a judgmental nurse who callously informs her that many of her problems would be solved by losing weight.
This very awkward encounter is made more so by BB informing her mum that she has no intention of going back to school after this summer. But before they leave the office, the nurse (for whom the reader has far more empathy after BB's rather manipulative outburst) hands BB a journal and tells her to start keeping a food diary. Not actually knowing what this entails, BB takes the "diary" portion of this assignment to heart. Instead of simply writing down every item she eats, at what time, and in what amounts, BB begins every entry with a food item, and then chronicles her life through her perception of that item.
BB doesn't hold back. All her thoughts and feeling are laid bare; no subject is too odd or taboo. She vividly recounts what life is like as a fat teen, including chunks of social commentary on how exhausting and rude the general populace can be. Not just in her own East London or the UK in general — these terrible perceptions are a worldwide epidemic.
But despite her true love for her own body, BB also displays a great deal of selfishness and self-sabotage. She puts herself in uncomfortable situations on purpose, forcing herself to be brave. Add to this BB's wild imagination and the horrible things she's prepared for strangers to say to her, and you get quite the adventure.
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