Big Bones – Laura Dockrill
I may have mentioned this before, so forgive me if I’m repeating myself, but I love Laura Dockrill, she is such an underrated writer and such a fabulous person! Like, seriously, she is wonderful. And once again, she’s created a completely loveable protagonist, no matter how much I loved the narration and BB’s characterisation, I did find this a little uncomfortable to read in places.
A heart-warming teen story from the unique voice of Laura Dockrill, about Bluebelle, aka BB, aka Big Bones – a sixteen-year-old girl encouraged to tackle her weight even though she’s perfectly happy, thank you, and getting on with her life and in love with food. Then a tragedy in the family forces BB to find a new relationship with her body and herself. Moving, memorable and hilarious.
This is an interesting one, because this whole book is BB’s food diary. After having an asthma attack and being dragged to the doctors, BB is told she needs to lose weight and as a starting point is made to keep a food diary, only, she gets a little too into her writing project, as well as keeping track of everything she eats, we also hear about her crushes, her family and her inner most thoughts about life, society and everything else occupying her mind. BB is somewhat torn between loving who she is and the skin that she is in and also wondering if life would be better, easier for her, if she was similar in size to her sister or her friend. She was an endlessly fascinating character to read about and a brilliant narrator, Laura Dockrill really bought her to life and I was laughing and cringing along with Bluebelle. But.
Yes. There is a but.
I am someone with somewhat disordered eating. Always have been. Idk, the rational bit of me knows that some of my thoughts about food are completely irrational, but the rest of me still manages to fall prey to it now and again. You might be wondering why a book that has such a great body positive message could cause such a reaction – well. Every single chapter contains BB’s thoughts about food. What she is eating. How she is eating it. How she prepared it. How much she loved it. There were times, when reading about her describe in ridiculously intense detail butter dripping through crumpets, that the irrational bit of my brain started telling me about globs of yellow fat coursing through my veins and that if I so much as looked at a crumpet covered in butter I would turn into Violet Beauregard from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. You know the Violet! You’re turning violet, Violet! bit. Which is ridiculous. I know this, but I couldn’t help it. So, from that point of view, if you too are someone that has difficulties with food sometimes, take this one slowly. I read it in stops and starts because it is genuinely a well written, funny, light hearted book and I would love to see more open minded BB like characters on my pages, but you know. Food.
Basically, this book is kind of fab and any issues I had with it were mine and mine alone. I love Laura Dockrill, probably always will and we need more heroines like Bluebelle – so do check this out if you get a chance!