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Does This Book Make My Butt Look Big?

“Never eat something at a truck stop called loaf.” That was a sage piece of advice given me by a friend a long time ago. A good piece of advice. There’s lots of good food advice out there. All of which is ignored by the creators of This is Why You’re Fat, the blog turned book that celebrates the most disgusting food creations known to all humankind. Many people, for example, might poo poo the idea of creating an entire house made of meat and then eating it, but this book celebrates that kind of gastronomic abomination.  YALSA’s 2011 Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers committee selected this book for the 2011 list, and also chose it as a Top Ten.

The concoctions celebrated by the book are extreme, over-the-top, and intentionally shocking. But perhaps the most shocking thing about This is Why You’re Fat is that I found myself getting hungry as I read it. I became desensitized by things like the Twinkie Wiener Sandwich (which is exactly what it sounds like topped with Cheez Whiz) so that eventually things like deep fried Cadbury eggs looked pretty appealing.

In the end, however, the book left me a little hungry in more than the nutritional sense. I was left wanting more. More commentary or captions would be nice. The introductory essay is written by an editor from humor website The Onion, and it is hilarious–more of that would be great.

This is Why You’re Fat is definitely not the only blog turned book. In the past few years the web has spawned many of these including I Can Has Cheezburger, People of Wal-Mart, Awkward Family Photos, and so on. The question is how well do these snarky, silly, over-the-top blogs do as books? Eh. As The Onion put it a couple of years ago, “why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free?”

It looks like turning web memes into books is a micro-trend. I’ve been trolling Urlesque looking for memes that could be the next great book. So far I can’t figure out how to make Auto-Tune the News into a book. Darn!

Joel Bruns

Currently reading Pastoralia by George Saunders and listening to Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver.

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Joel Bruns

I am a librarian who lives and works in Indiana. I love all outdoor activities (running, cycling, skiing, kayaking...).

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