Fat Kid Rules the World by K. L. Going

Seventeen-year-old Troy Billings — 300-pounds, isolated, and unhappy—is ready to end it all by stepping off a NYC subway platform when he is saved by the mysterious Curt McCrae. Curt is the stuff of high-school legends: a drop-out, drifter, and punk rock legend. While on the surface Curt and Troy couldn’t be more different, they share similarities that cause them to form a bond.

Both Troy and Curt come from dysfunctional homes. Troy’s isolation and weight issues began after his mother passed away from cancer years ago. His former military father is withdrawn and strict, and his younger brother, Dayle, is embarrassed of Troy’s weight, openly mocking him both at home and at school. Curt comes from a broken home, and his stepfather is mentally and physically abusive. Curt spends most of his time living on the streets, stealing food, money, and prescription medications. Despite these obstacles, Curt is a genius guitar player and has played music with some of Troy’s favorite bands. So when Curt appoints Troy as the drummer in his new band—despite the fact that Troy can’t play the drums—Troy is willingly swept up into Curt’s wild world.

While Fat Kid Rules the World is a book that will make you laugh, it also will pull at your heartstrings. This novel is full of raw emotion and will surely speak to anyone who has ever felt isolated or unaccepted. If you like the book, be sure to check out the movie version that was released on DVD this year!

Review by Maddie, CLP-Squirrel Hill

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