Author Showcase: Phil Drake Tackles Kid’s Weight Issues
By Luanne Hunt of LJ Gambone Agency, for The Children’s Book Review
Published: April 14, 2011
CHUBBY CHILDREN’S AUTHOR PHIL DRAKE TACKLES KID’S WEIGHT ISSUES IN HILARIOUS AND UNIQUELY EMPOWERING SELF-HELP BOOK, “FAT CHANCE”
Children’s Author/humorist Phil Drake admits he was highly aggravated when someone referred to his new book “Fat Chance” as a literary masterpiece. While it may be one of the funniest and most uniquely empowering self-help books for kids ages 8 and up on the subject of body image and struggling with weight issues, Drake says, “It ain’t no “Moby Dick.”
Rest assured, the Montana native’s humble attitude is as real as his lifelong battle with trying to maintain a svelte physique for the purpose of fitting in and of course, health reasons (LOL!). And it’s that humility which makes him the ideal mouthpiece for every young person who has ever been ridiculed or discriminated against for being overweight.
“If anyone reads “Fat Chance” and proclaims: “I want to be fat, too!” then I have failed,” said Drake, a former newspaper editor for publications in California, Montana and Ohio. “No one wants to be fat, no matter what they say. So often when I had people around me scream, “You’re fat!” I always took it to mean that I was a failure as a human being, that they were better than me and that I didn’t deserve to be happy. My one resounding theme in “Fat Chance” is that it’s what’s in your heart that matters.”
Beyond getting his message across that the size of a person truly doesn’t matter when it comes to making friends and eventually finding true love and happiness, Drake hopes his book will help kids to see that life is too short to spend it obsessing over numbers on a scale. His delightful tale about a battle between two long-feuding kingdoms highlights that point at every adventurous turn.
The story centers around Chubolia, a place where everyone is fat and Thinsylvania, a country where only skinny people live. The two kingdoms find themselves in the throes of a battle when the prime minister of Thinsylvania kidnaps the Chubolian princess (Tunya) for his bride after his former bride-to-be (Annie) dies at the altar from anorexia.
When the Chubolians discover Tunya is missing, two of her suitors, Hamilton Fatz and Big Jim McBiggins, vow to get her back no matter what it takes. The two men embark on an incredible adventure to rescue her and meet up with intense physical and psychological challenges along the way. In the end, everyone involved learns valuable lessons about finding self-worth and true beauty in a world where there seems to be far too much emphasis placed on physical appearance.
“Just because you’re fat doesn’t mean you’re worse than anyone else,” said Drake. “Remember, there are a lot of stupid thin people out there. It could be worse; you could be one of them. “As a fat person you have to be of better character than those around you. You have to bite your lip to keep from shouting something back just as hateful, which I have often failed at. Good luck with that.”
“Fat Chance” is available online at Amazon, Barnes and Noble and other literary retailers. For more information about Drake, log on to: www.phildrake.net
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