First of all, if you are trying to tell me the girl in the striped shirt is fat, then we are in trouble. Secondly, Linda Perl, you need a good editor to help you with your writing. There was way too many ideas going on for a single book. Sarah lives in California with crazy hippy parents. They don’t mention it, but you know it’s Berkeley. Ah, those were the days when Berkeley was the alternative center of the universe, instead of what it has turned into: old, aging hippies, clueless college students, and yuppies with their expensive strollers. But I still love it (I’m East bay for life).
This gal, Sarah, has an older brother and their thang is they make alphabet burgers. As in A is for Avacado Burgers, B is for Bacon burgers, etc. Sarah is also ashamed of her parents when they move in a garbage truck to Rhode Island or Maine or somewhere similar. Sarah meets the titular Glenda, who is not only fat but is the town scapegoat because of said fatness and her social awkwardness. She’s the kind of girl you want to feel bad for, but she doesn’t make it easy for herself (not talking about her weight, but her extreme neediness and lack of social savvy. Then again, Gelnda’s kind of fun, and kids are really mean.) Sarah actually finds most of the kids boring, and actually appreciates Glenda’s loyalty as a friend. Then there’s some drama about Halloween and a plot to ruin a garbage statue that Sarah’s parents sculpted on their front lawn.
We also are given a glimpse into Glenda’s fucked up relationship with her perfectionist mother and Glenda’s sad attempt at seducing Sarah’s older brother. At the end, Sarah ends up moving away again but promises to write to Glenda. We are supposed to be happy that Glenda finally has a friend, but now she’s moving away? Why punish this character even more? Also, as I said, there are too many tidbits in this book, I’ve never read anything so unfocused.
I do seem to remember a sequel where Glenda loses weight by eating only three meals a day with nothing in between. Hence an inspiration for the diet I went on in high school, and lost 50 pounds as well as my healthy relationship with food and a healthy self-image. Woopsies! I guess I should blame Lila Perl for 15 years of my life I will never get back.