Adorable Fat Girl Takes Up Yoga

Author: Bernice Bloom
Published: April 28, 2018

Reviewed By: Jessica
Dates Read: August 21-24, 2019
Jessica’s Rating: 4 stars

Book Description:

The Adorable Fat Girl needs to do something to get fit. What about yoga? I mean – really – how hard can that be? A bit of chanting, some toe touching and a new leotard. Easy! She signs up for a weekend retreat, packs up assorted snacks and heads for the countryside to get in touch with her chi and her third eye. And that’s when it all goes wrong.

Featuring frantic chickens, an unexpected mud bath, men in loose-fitting shorts and no pants, calamitous headstands, a new bizarre friendship with a yoga guru and a quick hospital trip.

Jessica’s Review:

Mary Brown is the Adorable Fat Girl and she stars in her own series of novels by Bernice Bloom. In fact there are 14 novels and each can be read as a stand-alone novel, but they also follow up with each other. I have read a few of the novels and have enjoyed them. I hope to read more! 

This time Mary decides to take up yoga and go on a retreat.  And it is full of unexpected adventures!  Like Mary, I know nothing of yoga and have never tried it.  I didn’t even know what downward dog is: I had to Google it.    

There was only one thing that bothered me in the novel: Mary brought WAY too many snacks for a weekend retreat, it just seemed too extreme. It was as if she was not going to be eating at all during the retreat. (Yes, they did eat meals, albeit very tiny ones. The snuck in snacks would have come in handy in this case, but not as much as she brought.)

Adorable Fat Girl takes up Yoga is a short read, I listened to the audio version and it was just under 3.5 hours long.  I enjoyed the ending and how it directly followed into the next Adorable Fat Girl novel which I have already read (Adorable Fat Girl and the Mysterious Invitation). 

Many thanks to the author for sending me an audio copy to read and review! 

Purchase Links:
Amazon US  
Amazon UK

My reviews for the other Adorable Fat Girl novels I have read:
Diary of an Adorable Fat Girl
Adorable Fat Girl and the Mysterious Invitation

Author Spotlight: Bill Mathis

Today we are bring you an Author Spotlight for Bill Mathis and his two published novels. Kim will also be sharing her review on his newest novel, The Rooming House Diaries: Life, Love & Secrets. Mathis’ other novel Face Your Fears will also be featured.

Bill Mathis’ second novel, The Rooming House Diaries: Life, Love & Secrets was published in August 2019. Bill began writing after retiring from careers in YMCA camping and foster care. He lives with his partner overlooking a river in southern Wisconsin and writes, reads, volunteers and travels. His first novel, Face Your Fears, is about disability, LGBTQ and family. A companion to his second novel, The Rooming House Gallery: Connecting the Dots, is under contract to publish in June, 2020. A fourth novel, psychological mystery and crime in a farm family, is well underway.

The Rooming House Diaries: Life, Love & Secrets

Published: August 9, 2019
481 Pages

Six fascinating and touching diaries are discovered in an old rooming house that detail the lives of the owners and tenants spanning over a century of change in Chicago’s Back-of-the-Yards neighborhood. An unwed pregnant teen shows up; a teen from Paris, France appears, the result of a relationship during World War I; the first Mexican in the neighborhood is given a room and eventually inherits the place, his diary describes his young life running the streets in Tijuana, Mexico and how the rooming house served undocumented AIDS clients. The matriarch leaves a long-hidden diary that details her undisclosed life of brothels. Filled with love, life and family secrets, The Rooming House Diaries prove DNA does not always make a complete family.

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 4 stars

Kim’s Review:

The author provided a free copy of the book in exchange for an honest review. I’m very glad I read this book; it’s a lovely story with many interesting characters. I love multiple timeline historical fiction and The Diaries gave me that. So many stories from the same family made it easy to get to know them and become emotionally involved. I enjoyed reading each story and learning more from each writer.

I really don’t have too many criticisms except for two, and those are just based on personal preference. Mainly, it’s about ratios. I don’t have any problem with gay people, but you’ll have a hard time convincing me that there were that many gay people all in one circle of people like that. Plus, back through this many decades, I really don’t believe that this many people, even in the same family, were that progressive in their thinking. It just got a little unbelievable, especially at the end.

Other than that, the stories were engaging and I didn’t want to put the book down. Each writer added a little bit more info and a lot of their individual personalities. I’d like to believe that if modern society had this kind of connected family unit, we’d have fewer problems in the world. I really liked this book and would recommend it to those who enjoy historical fiction, centered around people, as opposed to plot.

Face Your Fears

Published: July 14, 2018
323 Pages

Face Your Fears is filled with vitality as it challenges the traditional concepts of normalcy, family, disability and love. Nate is a quadriplegic with cerebral palsy raised in a family of achievers. He must be fed, dressed and toileted, yet has unique skills and abilities he gradually becomes aware of. Jude is able-bodied, one of 10 children raised on a hardscrabble Iowa farm. He can change diapers, cook, fix equipment, milk cows, and discovers his vocation as a physical therapist. Both experience tragic teen-age losses, navigate family tragedies, and come to peace with who they are individually as gay men, and eventually together.

This book shows how normal comes wrapped in different packages, yet inside each package, people are the same, whether able-bodied, disabled, black, white, brown, green or LGBTQ+.

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

Contact Bill:
Instagram: @bill_mathis_writer
Twitter: @billmathiswrit1


First Line Friday #123

Today’s First Line Friday is a YA novel that focuses on gender fluidity. I find it hard to keep up with all the different types of genders and sexual preferences that now exist, but I’m trying! Maybe reading this book will help….

The first thing you’re going to want to know about me is: Am I a boy, or am I a girl?


Riley Cavanaugh is many things: Punk rock. Snarky. Rebellious. And gender fluid. Some days Riley identifies as a boy, and others as a girl. The thing is…Riley isn’t exactly out yet. And between starting a new school and having a congressman father running for reelection in uber-conservative Orange County, the pressure—media and otherwise—is building up in Riley’s so-called “normal” life.

On the advice of a therapist, Riley starts an anonymous blog to vent those pent-up feelings and tell the truth of what it’s REALLY like to be a gender fluid teenager. But just as Riley’s starting to settle in at school—even developing feelings for a mysterious outcast—the blog goes viral, and an unnamed commenter discovers Riley’s real identity, threatening exposure. Riley must make a choice: walk away from what the blog has created—a lifeline, new friends, a cause to believe in—or stand up, come out, and risk everything.

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK