Artichoke’s Heart by Suzanne Supplee
Title: Artichoke’s Heart
Author: Suzanne Supplee
Release Date: June 12, 2008
Publisher: Dutton Juvenile
Page Number: 224 Pages
Buy Here: Artichoke's Heart
Blubber meets Steel Magnolias in this funny and honest story about body image and family.
Rosemary Goode is smart and funny and loyal and the best eyebrow waxer in Spring Hill, Tennessee. But only one thing seems to matter to anyone, including Rosemary: her weight. And when your mom runs the most successful (and gossipy) beauty shop in town, it can be hard to keep a low profile. Rosemary resolves to lose the weight, but her journey turns out to be about everything but the scale. Her life-changing, waist-shrinking year is captured with brutal honesty and humor, topped with an extralarge helping of Southern charm. A truly uncommon novel about an increasingly common problem.
The first time I read Artichoke’s Heart, I was instantly amazed! I laughed, cried, swooned, and screamed throughout the 224 pages filled with Suzanne Supplee’s amazing writing. The first time I read it was a few weeks after its first release and I borrowed it from the library. After completing the novel, I raved and raved about this novel and convinced my best friend to read it. I even vowed to buy my own copy one day!
Fast forward three years later, it finally resides in my shelf and I’m incredibly happy that I bought it! Reading the story a second time definitely gave me a better insight on the novel. I was able to notice little things that I definitely skipped over the first time upon reading and it contributed to my whole reading experience a whole lot more.
I found the story very realistic and inspirational, especially those who have qualms about their weight (and yes, I belong to the club). I love how the story isn’t sugarcoated and that, yes, the motivation for losing weight CAN be over a guy and not just fully for yourself.
What I really love about this book is the focus on Rosemary’s relationships with everyone around her, whether platonic, romantic or familial. I find that Suzanne Supplee has mastered the art of writing about character relationships within her books. The relationships were REAL and it affected me so much because I see it in my own relationships with other people.
Rosie, the main character is great! I thought that her low self esteem will eventually get on my nerves, but she didn’t. I was able to sympathize with her inner torment and her bitterness about herself that I was okay with her outlook. However, I also applaud Supplee’s amazing character development for Rosie, because I saw the transition well, but it was gradual—which made sense.
The setting also contributed really well to the story, considering that it is set in the south where there are a lot of gossipers and a lot more people dealing with the same issues. The southern setting created such a great feel that, although there are some exaggerated parts in the novel (Rosie’s weight loss), the setting made everything realistic which caused the exaggeration to be overlooked.
I DEFINITELY recommend this book to everyone, because not only does it deal with hard and heavy issues, but it presents it in a way that doesn’t make it too dark and depressing, so the novel remained serious; yet light. And for the second time, around, I still find myself loving it as much as I did three years back.
So pick up your copy today and enjoy the “fatty” puns and Supplee’s comedic writing! It’ll definitely have you thinking twice before you gorge on that pint of Ben & Jerry that’s screaming your name in the fridge.