Saturday, November 22, 2014

Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes by Chris Crutcher

Title: Staying Fat For Sarah Byrnes
Author: Chris Crutcher
Release date: January 1, 1993
Pages: 304

Sarah Byrnes and Eric have been friends for years. When they were children, his fat and her terrible scars made them both outcasts. Later, although swimming slimmed Eric, she stayed his closest friend.

Now Sarah Byrnes—the smartest, toughest person Eric has ever known—sits silent in a hospital. Eric must uncover the terrible secret she's hiding, before its dark currents pull them both under.
Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes is the story of two kids, Eric and Sarah Byrnes, brought together by their outcast status.  Sarah Byrnes is severely scarred and Eric is seriously fat.  Their friendship changes when Eric joins the swim team and loses a lot of weight.  Their friendship is tested though when Sarah Byrnes enters a catatonic state and Eric starts to investigate what it is that made her that way.

Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes is a novel that can easily be read by younger readers but it does touch on some topics that might be better suited to older readers of YA.  I would definitely recommend this one for late middle school or early high school readers though older readers (such as myself) can also enjoy the story.


  • bullying
  • friendship
  • religion
  • abuse
  • love
  • family
  • abortion
  • abandonment
  • suicide 
Extra content:

YA Love Blog's review: "In my opinion, if you’re a teacher or librarian, it would serve you well to have a copy of Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes in your library."

Reading For Sanity's review: "While plenty of books on the YA shelves are meaningless drivel, Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes is not one of them."

Interview with Chris Crutcher

Author chat with Chris Crutcher


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