I really wanted to read a book with excellent plus size body positivity rep and was seeking recommendations and I also have been reading #romanceclass books. This book met both of those criteria! It’s an #ownvoices Filipino author who I’ve read one other book – The Queen’s Game, and already enjoyed. This book did not disappoint and honestly left me just feeling pretty delighted all around.
Martha is the plus size heroine who isn’t on a journey to self acceptance. She loves herself and her body is great the way it is – but it would be better if the people around her would get that and move on from fat shaming bullshit. Err, or maybe I was inserting my own experiences into the book? That was partly what I loved about this book though – with every negative comment Martha got I was thinking to myself CHECK, I’ve heard that one before. But she is still able to do the almost impossible – love herself *and* her body despite the negativity. I couldn’t love her any more.
“I’m actually happy with my weight, even though it’s hard to believe. I like that I can work it, because it’s mine. Everyone makes me feel so guilty for it, like there’s something wrong with me. But come on. I look amazing. And honestly? I don’t say it enough. I LOOK AMAZING.”
Her one-time crush/kind of love shows up, but happens to be engaged to her cousin/one time tormenter. And I felt like this piece of the story was handled really well. Because not everyone is truly villainous. And neither Enzo or Rena were evil in this book. Neither one is exactly redeemed by the end, and I wouldn’t say either are exactly evil. I thought that their character development was done realistically in a way I could see happening in real life.
And then with all the trope-y goodness enter Martha’s BFF and…fake dating!! I love some good trope usage. Max was adorable and super into Martha from the beginning, even if she could not see it. It was refreshing to see no storyline of weight loss, or the love interest needing to come to terms with her body. All of that was just great for me. There was a lot of self deprecating humor…but I completely could relate to that so it felt honest to me. I’m glad I read such a cute book and I’ll be looking forward to MORE plus size heroines who love their bodies!
Rating: 4 Stars
Title: If the Dress Fits
Author: Carlos de Guzman
Release Date: October 15th, 2016