Rating: 3/5 stars.
Here’s my preface: I know some people are naturally heavier than others. I’m aware that some people have medical issues. I know, as cliche as it sounds, that what’s on the inside matters much more than what’s on the outside.
But Butter was just so frustrating. I don’t want to sound insensitive or make it seem like I’m a jerk who hates obese people, but this book had me on the edge. The main character, at 423 pounds, would eat to upset his mom and would fail to take responsibility for his actions – even when he was aware that what he was thinking was wrong. He possessed a propensity for thinking shallow things that would set me off. Here’s an example:
So it was just me, a pile of dirty dishes, and a dining table covered in crumbs and splattered juice. The suddenly nauseating smell of pot roast overwhelmed me. I fought the urge to puke. That’s right. I fought it. I was a binge eater, not a bulimic. That sh*t is for girls.
Not cool. However, Erin Jade Lange did develop Butter and make him more relatable by revealing the bullying and taunting he had experienced. Unfortunately, this didn’t compensate for the cast of one-sided characters and Butter’s lack of logic. I didn’t dislike Butter for his inability to overcome his weight issue; I disliked how he handled his issue through his dangerous and reckless actions.
I’ll give Erin Jade Lange points for crafting a complexly simple book. There’s no clear message – which is a positive and a negative – and I never really understood Butter, but still felt somewhat sorry for him. We all should know by now that bullying is wrong and making fun of other people because of their appearances is also wrong. Erin Jade Lange tackles these topics in a way that is on one hand annoying, on the other hand, thought-provoking.