Eat Your Heart Out by Kelly DeVos
Published on November 02, 2021
Reviewed by Jayde Valosin
Eat Your Heart Out by Kelly DeVos is a satirical spin on classic zombie movies with a refreshing amount of body positivity. None of the main characters have truly come to Camp Featherlite to lose weight, and Vivian herself outright rejects any notion that there is anything wrong with her or her body because of its size. Other characters, especially Paul Fannon (the terribly rude son of a rich businessman), make over the top comments regarding the weight of Vivian and other campers but Vivian's commentary humorously reminds readers of how truly ridiculous it is to judge a person based solely on their body composition. By the end of the story, Vivian is disproving many commonly held myths regarding body size and fitness while barreling her way through hordes of zombies and doing her best to save her friends. It is also incredibly refreshing to see her taken seriously as an attractive romantic interest in the story, a departure from how her character might be treated in a more traditional YA novel.
There are many nods to horror films throughout the story, including Allie's belief that all the main characters fulfill a common movie archetype, like The Action Girl and The Courageous Captain. This helps keep readers in the right frame of mind for this intentionally exaggerated story. For fans of the movie Shaun of the Dead and for those who want strong anti-fatphobic and body positive characters, this book is the perfect choice.
For those struggling with body image or who feel they may be triggered by negative body/food talk, I would recommend that you exercise caution in reading and skip this book if you feel it may not be right for you.