Fat Chance, Charlie Vega

Crystal Maldonado

fiction contemporary young adult
emotional reflective medium-paced

288 pages | first published 2021

Coming of age as a Fat brown girl in a white Connecticut suburb is hard.
Harder when your whole life is on fire, though.

Charlie Vega is a lot of things. Smart. Funny. Artistic. Ambitious. Fat.

People sometimes have a problem with that last one. Especially her mom. Charlie wants a good relationship with her body, but it's hard, and her mom leaving a billion weight loss shakes on her dresser doesn't help. The world and everyone in it have ideas about what she should look like: thinner, lighter, slimmer-faced, straighter-haired. Be smaller. Be whiter. Be quieter.

But there's one person who's always in Charlie's corner: her best friend Amelia. Slim. Popular. Athletic. Totally dope. So when Charlie starts a tentative relationship with cute classmate Brian, the first worthwhile guy to notice her, everything is perfect until she learns one thing--he asked Amelia out first. So is she his second choice or what? Does he even really see her? UGHHH. Everything is now officially a MESS.

A sensitive, funny, and painful coming-of-age story with a wry voice and tons of chisme, Fat Chance, Charlie Vega tackles our relationships to our parents, our bodies, our cultures, and ourselves.

What the community thinks

summary of 35 ratings (see reviews)

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emotional 76%
hopeful 73%
lighthearted 61%
funny 57%
inspiring 57%
reflective 30%
relaxing 15%
sad 11%
challenging 3%
tense 3%


medium 80%
fast 15%
slow 3%

Plot- or character-driven?

Character: 84% | A mix: 15%

Strong character development?

Yes: 84% | N/A: 7% | No: 7%

Loveable characters?

Yes: 77% | It's complicated: 18% | No: 3%

Diverse cast of characters?

Yes: 100%

Flaws of characters a main focus?

Yes: 88% | It's complicated: 8% | N/A: 4%

Average rating