Fat Chance is an absolutely hilarious, laugh-out loud novel that takes a deeper look at the physical and mental consequences of being extremely overweight in a society that can be harsh at best. Spalding’s writing is witty, comical and entertaining and you won’t want to put the book down until you’re done reading it! This is a wonderful story about the journey a couple goes through in attempts to lose weight and the way that it changes their lives and outlook on life.
Fat Chance by Nick Spalding
Publication Date: October 7, 2014 by Lake Union Publishing
Kindle Edition: 289 pages, $3.99
What’s the Story?
Meet Zoe and Greg Milton, a married couple who have let themselves go a bit.
Zoe was a stunner in her college days, but the intervening decades have added five stone, and removed most of her self-esteem. Greg’s rugby-playing days are well and truly behind him, thanks to countless pints of beer and chicken curry.
When Elise, a radio DJ and Zoe’s best friend, tells them about a new competition, it seems like the perfect opportunity to turn their lives around. Fat Chance will pit six hefty couples against one another to see who can collectively lose the most weight and walk away with a £50,000 prize.
So begins six months of abject misery, tears, and frustration–that just might turn out to be the best thing that ever happened to them–in another laugh-out-loud look at the way we live now from bestselling author Nick Spalding.
Zoe and Greg Milton have increasingly put on unwanted weight throughout the past ten years. It’s difficult for them to admit, but their weight has gotten to the point where it’s put them both in quite a few humiliating situations. When Zoe’s friend Elise asks them to enter a new contest called Fat Chance that will be promoted and aired by Stream FM, Zoe can’t help but be tempted by the £50,000 prize to the winning couple. This is the perfect solution to get them to lose the weight that’s crept on over time and the prize money is a great motivation to participate. For six months Zoe and Greg will attempt to lose weight and although they have to partake in a few publicly promoted competitions and interviews on the radio, how bad could it be?
Throughout the competition the Miltons take steps to change their diet and eating habits and begin adding exercise to their daily lives. As the weight drops off, they have to buy new clothing as their old clothing becomes too large. What started off as an attempt to just lose weight, has managed to jump start their lives and completely change their lifestyle. Now that they aren’t bogged down by excess weight or a gross feeling of eating unhealthy food, they have a renewed sense of confidence and energy. What had become a dwindling sex life is now filled with a renewed and energized passion for one another and the possibility of a baby in the future. Dinner becomes a time to spend quality time together and not just about shoveling food in as fast as possible.
Spalding had me laughing out loud from page one and continued to entertain me throughout the entire story. I laughed about the ridiculous diets that Zoe tries and even harder at the get-fit-quick contraptions that Greg buys on infomercials. I laughed about Greg’s rant about how if society expects people to get thinner then they should make healthy food cheaper than the unhealthy stuff. I laughed about Zoe’s new-found obsession with online shopping and her habit of ordering the same thing in three sizes to fit once she loses the weight. In fact, I don’t think there was a single scene that didn’t make me laugh. Zoe and Greg ultimately find that losing weight comes from hard work and realize that much to their sense of personal pride, losing weight is a direct reflection of their efforts to lead a healthier life.
Although this novel is filled with great humor it also has an underlying message of the importance of working hard but also of having pride in yourself, at every step in your journey. It gives an intimate perspective on how the larger live in shame, guilt and self-loathing with the choices they’ve made over time that has put them in a less than happy situation. Often times people assume that overweight people don’t care and that couldn’t be further from the truth. Sometimes people wake up one day and realize that the weight has crept up on them and it takes a little push to do something about it. In the end, the Miltons realize that it isn’t about the money, it’s about the hard work and the journey that they have taken together to change their lives for the better. It’s beautiful to see how they begin to have pride in themselves and each other and how what you do to have a healthy lifestyle can improve many aspects of your life and your relationships. I highly recommend this novel to anyone that likes to laugh and I will certainly be adding Spalding’s other novels to my TBR.
My Rating: 5/5 Stars
Thank you to NetGalley and Lake Union Publishing for providing me with A Review Copy in exchange for an honest review.
About the Author
Before becoming a full-time author, he worked in the communications industry, mainly in media and marketing. As talking rubbish for a living can get tiresome (for anyone other than a politician), he thought he’d have a crack at writing comedy fiction – with a very agreeable level of success so far, it has to be said. Nick has now sold over half a million books, and still can’t quite believe his luck.
Nick lives in the South of England with his fiancée. He recently had to turn 40 – and is rather annoyed at the universe because it gave him no choice in the matter; he also suffers from the occasional bout of insomnia, is addicted to Thai food, and still thinks Batman is cool.