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Food, Girls and Other Things I Can't Have: 07/06/12

cover art

High school student Andy Zansky weighs over 300 pounds and hasn't ever tried out for sports because of his asthma. This year though he plans join the football team to impress a cheerleader he likes. That's the premise of Food, Girls and Other Things I Can't Have by Allen Zadoff.

As is so typical with this type of YA novel, Andy's parents are separated. So beyond his weight issues and girl trouble, Andy's story is also about the stress of recently divorced parents.

Andy holds his own as an interesting and likable protagonist with a strong enough voice to carry the story. Andy's constantly being pulled in three directions: family, girl and health as he tries to join the football team and be a contributing member. In the process he loses friends, strains other friendships and gains some new ones.

I liked the book up until the ending. After all the talk about football and the big game, things just sort of stop. It's as if someone flipped a switch in the back of Andy's head and he's suddenly back his pre-Chapter One self. It felt as if nothing was accomplished in the book and that Andy didn't learn anything from all his hard work.

Four stars

Comments (0)

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Comment #1: Saturday, July 07, 2012 at 01:18:33


I read this a couple of years ago and I remember realy enjoying it-good writing and some humorous moments although not my fave book because I can't remember all that much about it.

Comment #2: Sunday, July 08, 2012 at 22:09:11


I found it a strong read, albeit a predictable one in places, up until the big game. Then it just sort of fell apart for me.

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