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Because We Love a Great Book, Here are 30+ Plus Size Centered Must-Reads! 

Media representation is important, and this goes beyond fashion blogging! This article lists books across genres (Mystery, Romance, Fiction and SciFi/Fantasy) featuring fat and plus-size characters.

Oprah just released her 2018 Book Club list and while we love Oprah we thought what’s better than having our own book club or giving options of books featuring plus size characters or books by plus size women… because representation matters!

Sometimes, you just want to read a book by someone who… gets it, you know? An author who writes about life as a plus size woman, not from a far, but who has lived it… or by a plus size woman addressing life and your challenges, right? Well, today, we have rounded more than a few must read books featuring or by plus size women!

Below, are some of our recs to add to your Audible or to your nightstand. We’ve divided the list by genre. You’re encouraged to peruse all of the titles, and try a book outside of your comfort zone!

While writing this post, the most common (and tired) storyline seems to be, “Plus size person exists. Good looking (generally thin) person notices them. Plus size person can’t believe their luck, etc etc.”

I’d like to see some more storylines where the main character is fat, and it’s not The Ultimate Plot Point, ya know? I know I’m a banging plus size babe (tooting my own horn), and there’s a lot more to the relationships I have, than my size.

Right? Right.

30+ Must-Read Plus Size Focused Books  

Memoirs & Non-Fiction

1. The Body is Not an Apology by Sonya Renee Taylor

The Body is Not an Apology by Sonya Renee TaylorThis. Book. Is. Beautiful. Now, I can only say that about the excerpts I’ve read, as it isn’t released until February 13. Bringing radical self-love into the body positive movement (something we’re all lacking), I am ready for “this book to be balm to my soul.

Get this book at Amazon.com 

2. Things Nobody Will Tell Fat Girls by Jess Baker

Things No One Will Tell Fat Girls-A Handbook for Unapologetic Living by Jes BakerIt was actually meeting Jes Baker at Knockout PDX that convinced me to buy this book. My favorite part about this book was the practical advice and insight (using real world stories, research, and snarky humor), Baker gives on how to actually be body positive. Actually, I bet the publisher did consider making the title, “Your Step-by-Step Guide to Being Body Positive IRL,” but the real title is more catchy.

Get this book at Amazon.com 

3. You Have The Right to Remain Fat by Virgie Tovar

 

You have the right to remain fat by Virgie TovarAlthough it’s not available yet (but you can preorder!), we are STOKED about the latest book from fat activist and writer Virgie Tovar.  The TCF team has been reading her intersectional feminist writing for YEARS, and we’re excited to read the latest from the #LoseHateNotWeight founder.

Preorder this book at Amazon.com 

4. The Not So Subtle Art of Being a Fat Girl by Tess Holliday

The Not So Subtle Art of Being A Fat Girl: Loving the Skin You're InHonestly, I was ready for this memoir, like, three years ago! I’m glad that Tess Holliday finally wrote it, and I get that she’s been busy. In the book, Tess talks about how her Southern upbringing has impacted her life, her love for Harry Potter, and what modeling is really like.

Get this book at Amazon.com 

5. Hunger by Roxane Gay

Hunger by Roxane GayCan I tell you a secret? I haven’t read this book. I bought it, in hardback, because I know it’s important to support diverse writers. I’ve read excerpts that have ripped my heart out of my body, and I’m just not ready for the whole thing. She’s All Fat podcast did a wonderful episode reviewing this book, and that episode will likely talk you into buying it.

Get Hunger at Amazon.com 

6. My Mad Fat Diary: A Memoir by Rae Earl

My Mad Fat Diary- A Memoir by Rae EarlReal talk, I didn’t even know this was a book – I thought it was just a really funny and relatable series on Hulu, that I binge watched over a 3-day weekend. This book follows Rae, a 17-year-old growing up in the late 80’s, who is navigating LOTS of hormones, a single mum, and, well, life. AND, as someone who has dealt with her own mental health battles, Rae had me cheering her on, laughing while crying and just, laughing.

You can get this at Amazon.com 

7. Shrill by Lindy West

Shrill by Lindy West

Lindy West is like, a combination of Buffy and Xena the Warrior Princess in 21st century media form for fat babes around the world. In her memoir, Lindy tackles societal expectations that women be small, both in opinions and stature, and gives a funny take-no-shit attitude to fat activism, rape jokes and trolls.

Buy this book at Amazon.com

8. Everybody Yoga by Jessamyn Stanley

Every Body Yoga by Jessamyn STanleyWritten by Yogi, Jessamyn Stanley (who also has a new podcast out!), Everybody Yoga helps readers enjoy movement, and challenges stereotypes on the kinds of bodies that can do yoga. Perfect for the person looking to add physical activity to their life, without the shaming/bullshit of the diet industry in January.

Pick this up at Amazon.com

9. Plus + by Bethany Rutter

Another member of the “To Be Released Club,” this glossy photobook shares OOTD photos from fat and plus-size bloggers all over the world.

Preorder on Amazon.co.uk

 

Science Fiction & Fantasy

1. The Lost Power by Kat Stroud

The Lost Power by Kat StroudPlus-size paranormal romance fans, rejoice! This is Kat Stroud’s first book in a new series, which brings in elements of history and myths.

Get it at Amazon.com

2. Drawing Dead by S.M. Reine

This series tells the story of Dana McIntyre, a plus-size lesbian vampire slayer in Las Vegas, set a handful of decades into the future.  I read the first book for this article, and then spent last weekend reading the other 3 books – the series is just that good. This 4-book post-apocolyptic series has vampires, sidhe and holy relics.

Get it at Amazon.com 

3. Faith Comic Series by Jody Houser

Faith Comic Series by Jody HouserWhen writing this article, I posted on social media asking for book recs from fellow plus-size babes. Natalie, of @NatalieMeansNice, recommended this comic series, and I was FLOORED by the incredible representation in this comic series. New to the superhero scene, fat babe ,Faith Herbert, is a journalist by day – but instead of living her best Clark Kent life, she finds herself writing a lot of cat listicles. Jody Houser’s modern spin on comic book heroes, featuring babes who look like us, was enough for me to buy the first 3 issues.

Get it at Amazon.com

4. Beneath The Sugar Sky By Seanan McGuire

Beneath the Sugar Sky by Seanan McGuirePart of “Wayward Children” children series, that tells stories of children reintroduced to ordinary life after fantastical adventures, this third (and standalone!) book tells the story of plus-size Rini who has to save the world (again). I’m a longtime fan of McGuire’s, who creates beautiful worlds and witty characters in all of her works.

Get this at Amazon.com

5. The Parasal Protectorate Series by Gail Carriger

The Parasal Prectorate Series by Gail CarrigerIn this steampunk series with vampires and werewolves, soulless (literally, soulless!) spinster Alexa Tarabotti is a spinster who is described as “full figured” and “solid,” which I interpret to be polite Victorian versions of the “plus-size.” My paperback copies have been put through the wringer (bathtubs, road trips, etc), because this is a series I love to reread.

Get this book at Amazon.com

6. Liesmith (The Wyrd #1) by Alis Franklin

Liesmith (The Wyrd #1) by Alis FranklinOne of the only books I could find that features a man as the protagonist, this gay love story and fantasy read has IT guy, Sigmund Sussman, as protagonist. Lain Laufeyjarson, a magnetic and handsome man, starts working at the same company as Sussman, and flirts with him.

Get it at Amazon.com

Additional Picks

Romance

1. Juliet Takes A Breath by Gabby Rivera

Juliet Takes A Breath by Gabby RiveraWhile Juliet doesn’t identify as fat or plus-size in the book, she does talk about being chubby. This book shares the story of Juliet, who has recently come out to her Bronx-based family. She travels to Portland to intern with a feminist writer she idolizes, with mixed results. Reading this book, I appreciated Rivera’s take on class, white privilege, love and activism – and laugh-cried my way through it. A must-read for queer folks and people who love them.

Get it at Amazon.com

2. The Corset Diaries by Katie MacAlister

The Corset Diaries

This fun read is all about a plus-size history nerd, Tess Riordan, wearing a corset for a month on the reality TV Show, “A Month in the Life of a Victorian Duke.” This fun beach read sometimes delves a little deeper, and is a nice change of pace for babes who enjoy their fair share of Harlequin romance novels.

Get it at Amazon.com

3. Wrapped by Rebekah Weatherspoon

Wrapped by Rebekah WeatherspoonSometimes, a gal just wants a steamy romance to read, you know? This book, featuring a “slightly anxious plus-size beauty” (can I steal that for my Twitter bio?), who braves the land of online dating to find her hunk. AND, author, Rebekah Weatherspoon, also writes romance books featuring queer women.

Get it at Amazon.com

Additional Picks:

Mystery

1. Larger Than Death by Lynne Murray

Larger Than Death

With sleuthing skills I can only dream about, this mystery series features a non-apologetic “woman of size” named Jo Miller, who ends up acting as a sort-of detective after finding her friend, a plus-size designer, murdered. This book doesn’t make apologies for size, and incorporates some of the best things about the plus-size community.

Get it at Amazon.com

2. Violet Crown: A Dr. Hedy Villarreal Novel

Violet Crown: A Dr. Hedy Villarreal NovelI hadn’t heard of this book until K.C. Littleton tweeted at me. The first line of the description used the word, “sexually liberal fatass,” which is honestly the best description of a lady protagonist I have ever had the pleasure of reading. Adding to that main character Heggy Villarreal is NOT=STRAIGHT, and I feel like I’ve died and gone to heaven. Littleton’s mystery deals with larger social issues of profiling and drug trafficking, while her snarky humor keeps spurring you on. Great for babes who are Weeds or Breaking Bad fans.

Get it at Amazon.com

Additional Picks

Fiction

1. Dumplin’ by Julie Murphy

Dumplin’ by Julie MurphyJust because you’re not a teen, doesn’t mean you can’t read (and love!) YA. This book challenges “before/after” tales that seem to accompany plus-size character, and made me cringe with laughter at a few poignant points.

Get it at Amazon.com

2. Fat Girl Dances by Susan Stinson

Fat Girl Dances by Susan StinsonA beautiful coming of age story, this book tells the story of fat Char who learns to see beauty in a myriad of forms.

Get it at Amazon.com

3. Conversations with the Fat Girl by Liza Palmer

Conversations with the Fat Girl

This heavier read will resonate with readers everywhere, as it focuses on the relationship of currently fat Maggie (who feels stuck in her life), and her formerly fat best friend, Olivia, who got gastric bypass surgery. This book deals with questions super relevant to the plus-size and body positive communities that we’re all grappling with, and does a fair job at sharing different viewpoints.

Get it at Amazon.com

4. Her Body and Other Parties: Stories Paperback – by Carmen Maria Machado

 Her Body and Other Parties: Stories Paperback – by Carmen Maria MachadoI bought this book at the recommendation of a friend, and it is so viscerally captivating that I put it down after the first short story. If you’re into literature that will mentally eff you up a la Black Mirror and magical realism, this is one book you don’t want to miss out on.

Get it at Amazon.com

5. Diary of a Mad Fat Girl by Stephanie McAfee

 Diary of a Mad Fat Girl by Stephanie McAfeeIf you’re looking for a book that unapologetically uses the word, “fat,” then this series is for you. Starring Graciela “Ace” Jones, this series is set in a small Southern town. Ace and her two besties navigate cheating spouses and returned lovers, prejudice in a variety of forms, and fat friendship.

Get it at Amazon.com

Additional Picks

And this is not even a full or exhaustive list! We have featured a few plus size books and authors on the blog before, especially with stylist, Susan Moses; but you have many of these authors debuting second books, like Jes Baker!

Are you one who loves to read and your favorite s not on the list? Let us know! We want to know who to keep our eye on!

What books did we miss?  Let us know in the comments!

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Written By

Brianne is a queer plus-size blogger over at TheHuntswoman.com. Check out her consulting work over on TheHuntswomanGroup.com.

17 Comments

17 Comments

  1. Kristy

    February 21, 2018 at 10:57 am

    I loved Agnes and the Hitman, too.

  2. Brie

    February 21, 2018 at 10:51 pm

    Excited to read through this list! Little dissapointed that many of the cover arts don’t reflect the beauty of the curvy/fat body.

    • Marie Denee

      February 27, 2018 at 7:26 am

      I know, I noticed this and I wonder if it was publisher or a personal choice…

    • Brianne

      November 7, 2018 at 12:17 am

      Also disappointed! I’ve been told by friends who are authors that authors often have little control over the cover art. Really appreciate SM Reine’s cover art for this reason!

  3. Liza

    February 22, 2018 at 12:13 am

    I’d also recommend the Odelia Gray series.

  4. Isabel

    February 23, 2018 at 12:14 am

    WAKE up I’m Fat by Camryn Mannheim should be here.

    • Marie Denee

      February 27, 2018 at 7:25 am

      Ohhhhhhh, I have yet to read this one. Thank you for the suggestion!

  5. Miranda

    February 23, 2018 at 7:41 am

    Also recommend ‘The Fairy’s Take by F.D.Lee – a mix of Terry Pratchett/ Neil Gaimen / George Orwell with a plus size female protagonist!

    • Marie Denee

      February 27, 2018 at 7:24 am

      Oh, thank you for the add… I like the mix and am curious!

  6. Katie

    February 23, 2018 at 1:01 pm

    For romance, I’d reccomend ‘Bottom’s Up’ by Holly Renee <3 Great cover, great author, hot story!

    • Marie Denee

      February 27, 2018 at 7:23 am

      ohhhhhh thanks for the suggestion, we will check it out!

  7. Alison Hilber

    February 24, 2018 at 10:13 am

    This is a great list… I’m going to get them all soon! I am also an author of books for fat girls!
    “Change How You See, Not How You Look: Power Tools for Celebrating Your Body,” 2004 and
    “I Am Who I Am: Sacredly Accepting My Body Temple,” 2016
    Thanks again for this wonderful list.
    Blessings,
    J. Alison Hilber

  8. Anne

    February 25, 2018 at 5:25 pm

    This is a great list – thanks! Looking forward to seeing more.

  9. Mara

    February 25, 2018 at 6:12 pm

    I highly recommend Dietland by Sarai walker. It was my best read of 2016. Refreshenly subversive. The tag line is the diet revolution is here and it is armed.

  10. Pingback: Meet Plus Size Blogger A Wheelbarrow Full of Style! | The Curvy Fashionista

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