So, I’m crying. I know that’s not how you’re supposed to begin a book review. But I know Virgie Tovar, and she respects the real like no other scholar/activist I’ve ever met. I’m crying with the realization that the words these women have written have never been read before. Have never been bound in book form to be passed from one person to another. Yes, there have been blogs and articles and videos and podcasts… maybe.
I like to say that I still believe in the alchemy of writing; the power of the writing process to transform the mundane into the extraordinary. Writing can turn confusion into wisdom and pain into perspective. This book contains so much wisdom and perspective I can’t hardly stand it. It’s like you ever take a bite of something really yummy, and it makes you angry? Or you ever get some of the super good booty and almost get mad about it? Yeah. Well, I said I was crying.
I know several of the contributors to this book and their stories are told in the same tone as if we were sharing a mirror in the ladies room. Real. Maybe like she’s letting you in on the conspiracy to free fat women from self hatred. Don’t get it twisted, these women know exactly what they’re doing by sharing the honest tale of their lived experience.
The tears didn’t really start until I got to Shawna Peters’ “Journeying into a Fat, Fleshy Vulva,” Goddamn! Why has this never been written before? Because we’ve been waiting for her to write it, of course. But first she had to experience it. She describes the catalyst to her journey- a moment of honesty by a sex educator. Plain unadorned truth set Shawna on a whole different path than what society had planned for her. And the tears welled in my eyes as I realized she is now doing for countless women what that one singular encounter did for her. And then hot thick tears overflowed my lids when I realized I was holding in my hand an entire collection of catalysts. Each story has the potential to change the path you are right now on.
This book is a chain reaction waiting to happen. I dare you to read it and not be transformed. You can buy Hot & Heavy here!