In a society that tells people they have to be thin to be happy and successful, it’s no wonder so many people think that there is something wrong or unhealthy about being fat. Being fat does not equal being unhealthy, lazy, or anything else. Fat bodies are good, valid, and one of the many types of bodies people can have!
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Thankfully, there are a growing number of children’s books that understand this. This collection of books features fat main characters. Too often, fat kids get pushed to the sidelines as the best friend or aren’t even included! In these books, fat kids get to be center stage, writing advice columns, fighting monsters, using magic, falling in love and much much more!
21 Fat Positive Books for Kids
Francis Discovers Possible by Ashlee Latimer
This adorably illustrated book is about a fat girl who feels good about being fat until some kids call her fat in a mean way at school. Her fat dad helps her learn to feel good about her body again. My favorite detail is the illustration of a fat mermaid!
Abigail the Whale by Davide Cali
A story about a fat white girl who learns to love swimming lessons and gain body confidence. Abigail dreads swim lessons because other kids there are mean to her. Luckily, Abigail’s amazing swim teacher helps her find her strength and build confidence.
This book is great for kids ages 5 and up.
The Belly Book by Fran Manuschkin
This book celebrates all types of bellies with fun illustrations. This book is perfect for sharing with children ages 2 and up.
Bodies are Cool by Tyler Feder
This body positive picture book features beautiful illustrations of a diverse range of bodies including many fat and disabled bodies. This book is one of my favorite picture books ever, a must have for sure! It’s a fantastic choice for kids of all ages.
Beautifully Me by Nabela Noor
This colorful book is about a South Asian fat girl who gets upset when her family members say negative things about their bodies and the family learns to appreciate their bodies.
Middle Grade Books
Some Places More Than Others by Renee Watson
A realistic fiction about a fat Black girl who travels with her dad to Harlem to meet her dad’s side of the family for the first time. A sweet story about family history and family relationships. I recommend this book for readers age 8 and up.
The Supervillain’s Guide to Being a Fat Kid by Matt Wallace
A fun, fat positive story about a fat white boy who asks a fat supervillain for advice on how to deal with school bullies. Master Plan is a compelling character with more nuance that most villains get! This is an excellent book for kids ages 8 and up.
Alice Austen Lived Here by Alex Gino
A contemporary fiction about a fat white non-binary kid doing a school project on queer history in Staten Island. A cute story full of queer friendship and joy. Read this one with kids ages 9 and up.
Dear Sweet Pea by Julie Murphy
A realistic fiction about a fat white girl who starts an advice column and deals with friendships and divorced parents. Julie Murphy is the queen of fat positive kids books and her middle grade novel captures the heart of her YA books, (such as Dumplin’) for younger readers. This book is a great choice for kids ages 9 and up.
Starfish by Lisa Fipps
This is a novel in verse about a fat white girl who gets bullied at school and pressured by her mom to lose weight, this is a heavy story based on events that happened to the author as a kid, but does have a positive ending. It’s a really good book, but could be hard for fellow fat kids to read the first half. I recommend giving a content warning for fatphobia and bullying before giving to a fat kid.
The Glass Witch by Lindsay Puckett
“Her bones are glass, but her heart is magic.” A magical fantasy about a fat white girl witch with no powers who tries to break her family’s curse. Great for fans of Harry Potter and Witchlings. I recommend sharing this book with kids ages 8 and up.
Young Adult Books
If It Makes You Happy by Claire Kann
A cute summer read about a fat Black queer girl who accidentally becomes the small town’s Summer Queen. This book is a fun choice I recommend for kids ages 13 and up.
Undead Girl Gang by Lily Anderson
This is a fun, fast paced story about a fat Latinx witch trying to solve her undead best friend’s murder with the undead mean girls. This book is one of my favorites and I couldn’t put it down. It’s recommended for kids ages 14 and up.
Fat Chance, Charlie Vega by Crystal Maldonado
“Coming of age as a Fat brown girl in a white Connecticut suburb is hard.” This book is a realistic fiction novel about a fat Latinx teen getting along with her mother and falling in love. Can Charlie be seen for the awesome girl that she is? How can she be sure that others, like her crush, see her that way, too?
This book is recommended for readers ages 14 and up.
A Dark and Starless Forest by Sarah Hollowell
This novel is a dark fantasy about a bisexual fat white girl named Derry whose siblings start to go missing. In order to save them, she must venture into a dangerous forest and risk it all. This captivating tale is great for readers ages 12 and up.
Love is a Revolution by Renee Watson
This cute love story about a fat, Black girl focuses on self-love and acceptance. Nala falls hard for Tye when she meets him at an open mic night. Nala tells a few lies to impress Tye, who’s a committed activist. As she falls harder for him, she learns the importance of being herself as she tries to manage the lies she’s told.
This romance is excellent for readers ages 13 and up.
The (Other) F Word: A Celebration of Fat and Fierce anthology edited by Angie Manfredi
This anthology is a collection of essays, poetry and art from a diverse group of fat authors. It includes works from Samantha Irby, Renee Watson, Bruce Sturgell, Isabel Quintero, and many more. It’s great for readers ages 13 and up.
No Filter and Other Lies by Crystal Maldonado
This contemporary fiction is about a fat Latinx teen, Kat, who creates a fake persona online that is blonde and conventionally attractive using pictures of her friend Becca. When Kat befriends a fat follower in real life, she doesn’t tell her about her secret. What will happen when Kat’s lies all catch up with her?
This story is a great choice for kids ages 14 and up.
The Kindred by Alecia Dow
This science fiction romance is about a fat Black girl named Joy who is mind-paired with a Duke. When the Duke is accused of murder, they steal a spaceship and crash land on an old planet called Earth. The two grow close as they hide out and do their best to evade the people who want them dead.
This action-packed book is recommended for kids ages 13 and up.
Out of the Blue by Jason June
This is a fake dating story about a fat white boy and a non-binary mermaid. Part of Merfolk ritual requires Crest to come to land and help a human, something they are not excited about. But Crest’s opinion on humans begins to change when he meets Sean, who was recently dumped by his boyfriend. A super cute romance for fans of Cemetery Boys, recommended for ages 14 and up.
Scout’s Honor by Lily Anderson
This supernatural story is about a group of Ladybird Scouts who protect their town from monsters. Prue quit the Scouts after the death of her friend, but decides to infiltrate the Scouts to steal a tea of amnesia to help her get over her guilt and grief. From the author of Undead Girl Gang, this book is a fast paced story full of heart. It’s recommended for ages 14 and up.
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